First and second graders read "I Like Cats" by Anushka Ravishankar and various artists. The book is about a brood of very moody cats. The illustrations come from the Gond Tribal artists of India. Gond people have a very long and very beautiful artistic tradition. They create narrative works using beautiful patterns. The designs were traditionally used to decorate the outside of homes, but given paint and paper are now being produced for a larger audience. It's wonderful to know that art can be used to generate income for the Gond community who live remotely and in many cases in extreme poverty. It's wonderful to know that work is being done to preserve the future of Gond art so that it can be enjoyed by the next generation. I purchased this little book from Tara books. The book is entirely handmade. Each image is silk screened by hand in India and bound by hand.
After reading the book and looking at the images students thought about different personalities cats might have and designed a moody cat of their own...hungry cats, scaredy cats, shy cats, and wild cats. Lots of moody cats are on the prowl. We outlined with brush and paint and then applied color with chalk pastels blending carefully with one finger.