Title: J is for Jalebi – Hindi Alphabets For Little Foodies
Author: Chitwan Mittal
Illustrator: Ambika Karandikar
Publisher: AdiDev Press Pvt Ltd
Type: Board Book
Age group: 0 – 6 years
Learning a language can be tedious and boring, especially a language like Hindi that has several similar sounding and similar looking ‘akshars’. My problem with the way Hindi is traditionally taught, is associating a particular ‘akshar’ with one particular object, like ‘kuh se kabootar’. Over time the child tends to associate only that one (usually very boring object) with that akshar. This becomes even more of a problem when the child is able to identify “Kuh” only when associated with the said word.
If you want to make learning Hindi exciting, and make sure that the akshars are associated with words different from those usually taught – this is the perfect book for you. A complete bonus is that all the words introduced in the book are to do with food.
“jhuh” se jhola (and the page has a cloth bag with a loads of veggies peeking out)
“chhuh” se chhola
“nuh” se nariyal
“puh” se paneer
My five year old, who is quite well versed with hindi akshars, has loved this book immensely. For him, the highlights of the book are the entirely new words he has learnt along with the adorable illustrations. He says he loved the book also because it has foods that he likes like gaajar and khichdi!
For me, from a parent’s perspective, this book has been very helpful to revise Hindi akshars in a fun way. My son, for the longest time ever, wrote “chuh” and “jhuh” inter-changingly. After we started reading this book, he would trace the alphabets on each page (each page has a big akshar which the child can trace with their fingers), and that helped him remember the formation.
However, what I’ve loved the most about the book is how it has helped instill a love for the language in my child. By introducing new words, and associating the akshars with foods, a dry, academic language has suddenly become the coolest language in our house!
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