Thatha at School by Richa Jha and Illustrated by Gautam Benegal

Thatha at School by Richa Jha
Title - Thatha At School
Written by Richa Jha
Illustrated by Gautam Benegal

In Richa Jha’s Thatha at school – Oviyam’s school is celebrating Grandparent’s day and all kids are expected to bring their Grandparents. Everyone is excited about this but Oviyam is not. Ovi doesn’t want her Thatha [ grandfather in Tamil ] to come to school.

It is not because she doesn’t love him, but because of his attire. He would only wear Dhoti everyhere he went and Ovi felt embarresed to take him to school, surely all her friends will laugh right? She decides to throw the note fom school into the dustbin, but as fate has it, her grandfather finds it. Ovi tries hard to dissuade him from coming, but her Thatha is super excited at the prospect of going to his favorite little girl’s school.

 

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Our kids are blessed with Grandparents who are educated and are ready to learn new things – to be in the know! They are ever so helpful and resourceful and are the kids first ardent fans. . . Father’s Day celebrates fathers and today I pay tribute to all the Fatherly figures in my kids lives. From My Dad they call Daddy – whose presence and love my kids crave and adore. To their Achachan ( my Husbands Dad) whose calls they never miss. To Valayachans ( Tinku and Denny Chettan and Praveen Chittapan) to uncle’s ( our friends) – they all shower their love and their affection and guidance on my little kids. . . We are forever blessed for their presence and their love. . . . Thatha (you must know) is the Tamil word for Granpa! In this amazing book by Richa Jha – it is Grandparents day at school and All Gramos are invited!!! But one little girl thinks this is a bad idea bacuse her Granpa wears Dhoti and she feels Embarrassed about it! So she thinks if Thatha doesn’t come to know about it – won’t it be the best? . But he does come to know and he is super excited to go!! The illustrations and the things the little girl Oviyam ( sorry ANJIE ) imagine are so real – she is panicky – she is distraught 😭 – and Gautam Benegal does a fantastic job of bringing everything to life 💖 . . It is NOT a preachy book, it is a subtle reminder of accepting your Grandparents the way they are and celebrating them with love – and that’s all they ever want. . . So in honour of all the different Grandparenta out here – this book is dedicated to all Grandfathers 🙌🏾💕 . . . #booksaddict #booksaboutgrandparents #indianpicturebooks #indianpicturebookpublisher #pickleyolkbooks #RichaJha #myfavorite #Kidsbooks #Booksforkids #picturebooks #picturebookstagram #kidsbookstagrammer #kidsbookstagram #Booksweread #readabook #booksarelife #bookstagram

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Thathat at school is a simple story, but an important one. I remember feeling awkward when my Dad or relatives who would be visiting, would wear Dhotis. I would feel like I would be teased. My kids, however don’t have to face such things because their Grandparents are much more modern, but this book is just not about attire. It is about anything that we feel compelled to not get associated with in fear of being laughed at. Acceptance of diversity in one’s family is the first step of accepting diversity outside. 

Teaching kids to accept people’s choices is a hard thing, but it can start at home. It is ok, if your Grandfather always wears Dhoti, or he wears his Topi. It is ok, if he talks in your mother tongue when in a public place and it is [of course] ok if they do not know English – a person’s choices or limitation should never define your relationship with them. I find that I am able to have converstaions on these topics with my kids. Even if they don’t “get” it, I am sure they wil understand very soon that acceptance is important in a family <3

I absolutely love the doodles that are intended as if they werw done by Ovi – so real and the entire book is a celebration of the Grandfather- daughter relationship. What Ovi realizes and what we all should aim for is that Love and acceptance, should be the foundation of your relationships <3

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80 thoughts on “Thatha at School by Richa Jha and Illustrated by Gautam Benegal

  1. This sounds like a terrific book for children! The illustrations are charming and the messages of the book are valuable. Love the photos–she’s so expressive!

  2. Working on relationship is never an easy work. It is not a child’s play for the adults who keep faltering in nurturing relationships. And also how we assume, associate and connect and disconnect with certain things in life. The culture, the tradition, the language, the way we dress and the way we eat and talk all matters.

  3. As kids these are something they don’t understand the way society looks at but the way people around them judge it and project it. The relationship we all have with our grandparents is so special and there is always that magical connection, it sparks a new feeling and bondage.

  4. Diversity is so much a part of our life and living, in fact the beauty of life derives its ingredients from the spectrum of diversity that dots our way…

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