Reviews and Praise
Bank Street College Best Children’s Books of the Year List
Commended Lists - Am ricas Book Award, Consortium of Latin American Studies Programs
Choices, Cooperative Children's Book Center (CCBC)
“…an uplifting offering that would be a wonderful addition to picture book collections and STEAM programs.”—School Library Journal
“...a buoyant, accessible. . . tribute to Mayan weaving.”
ALSC’s 2017 Building STEAM with Día! Booklist for K-2.
Chosen as the Story Walk selection for Westchester County’s Gedney Park
Junior LibraryGuild Selection
BILINGUAL: English and Spanish!
Tejedora del Arcoiris
September 1, 2016
Bilingual English/Spanish. A young Mayan girl isn't allowed to use her mother's thread to weave, so with a little ingenuity she discovers how to repurpose plastic bags to create colorful weavings. Based on an actual recycling movement in Guatemala.
Ixchel wants to follow in the long tradition of weaving on backstrap looms, just as her mother, grandmother, and most Mayan women have done for more than two thousand years. But Ixchel's mother is too busy preparing her weavings for market. If they bring a good price, they will have money to pay for Ixchel's school and books. And besides, there is not enough extra thread for Ixchel to practice with.
Disappointed, Ixchel first tries weaving with blades of grass, and then with bits of wool, but no one would want to buy the results. As she walks around her village, Ixchel finds it littered with colorful plastic bags. There is nowhere to put all the bags, so they just keep accumulating.
Suddenly, Ixchel has an idea She collects and washes the plastic bags. Then she cuts each bag into thin strips. Sitting at her loom, Ixchel weaves the plastic strips into a colorful fabric that looks like a beautiful rainbow--just like the weavings of Mayan women before her.
Such a special book!
I wrote it for a dear friend, a Guatemalan, who - like me - is an anthropologist. She founded the organization, Mayan Hands, to help Mayan women support their families…and keep alive their traditions. By sharing the story of contemporary Mayan people and donating profits from this book, I hope that
I, too, can help.