Multicultural Picture Book

Maggi Dieker

"Mamá and Me" by Arthur Dorros, with illustrations by Rudy Gutierrez was published in 2011 by HaperCollins Publishers

My read aloud is planned for third graders. "Mamá and Me" is a picture book about a bilingual girl preparing her present for her mother on mother's day. This book mixes both Spanish and English in the text, making it unique in it's own right. The illustrations are colorful and authentic which draws the eye into the story. This book invites you to be entertained, shows you how to be helpful, and makes you think about showing your mother how much you love them everyday, not just mother's day.

The author and the illustrator have both received awards for their books, including "Papá and Me" for which they won the Pura Belpré Honor. Arthur Dorros has also won the Orbis Pictus and the Parents' Choice award.
Interviewer Tim Podell meets prize winning children's author Arthur Dorros.

Arthur Dorros talks about writing children's books.


During my reading of "Mamá and Me" I will emphasize two words: ripest and beautiful. I will point out the words while reading and talk about what they mean, and then at the end on reading i will have the students make word posters on yellow paper, like the girls scarf, and on one side demonstrate what ripest means, then write the word and definition, and on the other side the will draw something they find beautiful and write the word and definition down.


Before reading the book, I will ask the students to the carpet, and to bring a clip board and a pencil with them; once the are in their spots on the carpet I will introduce the book to them and ask them what they think the book will be about based on what the cover says and looks like. After allowing them to answer, I will begin reading. during the book I will ask them if they know what "Te ayudo"means, and have them answer. I will also ask them what they think the little girl is going to make her mom, and what ripest and beautiful mean, when they come up in the story. Finally at the end i will ask what the little girl meant by saying "tomorrow will be mother's day too." Once the children answer that question I will talk to them again about beautiful and ripest and what they mean, them have them do their word posters.


  • Why was this particular book selected? How did it “match” the funds of knowledge of this particular class/group of students?
I chose this book because the majority of the children in my class are Hispanic, and I felt since the book was about a hispanic girl and used some Spanish, it was the best choice. The book really showed the hispanic culture, while still not being exclusive enough to exclude others.
  • What were the strengths of the read aloud/the picture book/vocabulary teaching presentation?
The children really seemed to enjoy the presentation, especially at the end where they got to be more creative. The strengths I found were the ending activity and the questions i asked to keep them engaged.
  • What would I need to do differently next time?
I would have better classroom management next time.While the children loved the freedom of expression, they got a little crazy toward the end.
  • Respond to the following open-ended statement: Implementing multicultural children’s literature that is culturally and linguistically diverse relative to my elementary students has helped me...
This has helped me connect better with my students. I feel like they felt more represented, so they were more eager to participate.