In Rohit Kulkarni’s The Pottering Pig, Lalita, the naughty pet pig of potter Mini Singh is always in trouble. Is she just being pig-headed? We spoke to the author about the book and his chilled out, good-natured pet, who he believes is far more intelligent than any dog.
"In today’s world, kids are bombarded constantly by the technological advances we have made. Our main character Dev uses meditation to master himself, which in turn enables him to defeat the various characters and challenges that he faces in our adventure story."
History and travel are two great teachers. History tells us about who we are and where we come from. It teaches us lessons and inspires us. And what could be a better way to learn about our heritage than travelling to these wonderful monuments? It’s so much more interesting for children to be able to see, smell and get a sense of a place by visiting it, rather than just reading about it. It’s fun and learning happens only when children are having fun.
If we look at the entire population, an average child under eight in the UK has six books outside of his/her school books. In India, understandably because of poverty, illiteracy etc, the figure would be lower. But can you believe it is less than one book per 100 children? We have a long way to go.
In small towns in India, we still see many women commuting on cycles and mopeds. Chandra, the character in Miss Laya's Fantastic Motorbike Does Not Like Fruits is based on a single mother who is a farmer, and rides a moped.
"When my son was about two years old, his favourite colours were pink and blue. Soon after he started play school, he came home and declared that he no longer wanted to use anything pink since it was a 'girl' colour."
"I want young readers to question who is being included in narratives and who is being marginalised. And I want them to know they have a very powerful tool within them that they can use any time to change the world: Ahimsa."
As we mourn the passing of Sridevi and celebrate her life by rewinding to songs like Hawa Hawai while in office, listening to other hits on the radio on the commute to work, there’s also the tantalising lure of gossip.
Hollywood, how many times are you going to blow up Los Angeles? Every time there’s an alien invasion or a threat from the skies, whether it’s Skyline, Independence Day or Alien, it’s usually Los Angeles.
Kids need nurturing, a feeling of connectedness and a safe zone where they can discuss their problems and, most importantly, feelings. But, for that, one needs to put away the mobile phone and learn to talk emotions with a child.