Dr. Amita Roy Shah is an award-winning author who has written the delightful multicultural children’s picture books It’s Time for Holi! and Lights, Camera, Diwali! with a mission of teaching, kids, parents and educators more about the Indian culture. She has spent her career in multicultural education and curriculum development and also the founder of HybridParenting.org; an online platform that is dedicated to investing in the cultural well-being of children.
Dr. Amita created Hybrid Parenting to empower parents to foster multicultural competence in their children. Multicultural competence is the ability to understand, effectively communicate, and interact with people from diverse cultures. This skill promotes higher level critical thinking skills and helps children develop multiple perspectives of the world.
Amita Roy Shah received her doctorate (Ed.D.) in Curriculum and Teaching from Teachers College, Columbia University. As a former teacher for Los Angeles Unified School District and a curriculum designer for various publishing firms, Amita knew that there was a need for realistic and meaningful books about the Indian culture. Her books have been integrated into the curriculum in many K-5 schools in the United States and abroad.
Her characters are inspired by the bicultural, lived experiences of her own children. Her illustrator, Diane Lucas, used photographs from her family’s day-to-day life to create realistic, culturally authentic images for her books. The main character of It’s Time for Holi! looks just like her son, Deven and the main character of Lights, Camera, Diwali! looks like her daughter, Lara.
Currently, Amita is an adjunct professor at San Jose State University in the Department of Child and Adolescent Development. She is also an instructional materials reviewer for the History and Social Science Standards for the California Board of Education.
More Information about Amita’s Books:
It’s Time for Holi! (2011)
It’s Time for Holi! won the Kids Are Readers Too! (KART) award for creating memorable content that enhances the gift of learning for children. A review of this book was also published in the Journal Worlds of Words (Volume VIII, Issue 3) for highlighting issues of cultural authenticity. This book has also been featured at the Children’s Museum in Atlanta and the radio station KALW 91.7 in San Francisco.
Lights, Camera, Diwali! (2016)
Lights, Camera, Diwali! book was featured as one of the top 10 Diwali books by Colours of Us. This book has been featured for at the Oakland Museum of California (OMCA) and at the Barnes and Nobles at the Hacienda Crossings in Dublin, California.
Please click on the following links for a guided lesson plan for each book:For Diwali you will find: a new Book Trailer, Indian Epic: The Story Of Diwali, Signs of Diwali worksheet, Cycles of the moon worksheet, and Free coloring pages.For Holi, you will find: Book Trailer, Indian Folktale: Krishna and Radha, Signs of Spring worksheet, Cycles of the moon worksheet, Readers Theatre Script, and Free Coloring Pages.Just a reminder for next year – approach teachers early in the year to let them know that you would like to come in to read either the Diwali or Holi book. Teachers love having visitors, but also need to plan for it in advance!