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A Day with Yayah

by Nicola I. Campbell

Other authors: Julie Flett (Illustrator)

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824323,130 (3.91)None
On an outing in Nicola Valley, British Columbia, a Native American family forages for herbs and mushrooms while the grandmother passes down her language and knowledge to her young grandchildren. Includes glossary.
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I liked this very much. The illustrations have a comforting, rounded, cut-paper-like effect, and the storyline is peace but easy to identify with. The children go gathering wild mushrooms and wild plants with their grandmother (Yahyah) as well as a great-uncle and great aunt. Yahyah is teaching them a Micmac word each day, and the words are embedded in the text as are descriptions of what they look for and how they honor the plants as they harvest them. Children who have living grandparents will likely to be able to draw comparisons to days out with their own grandparents.
For reading aloud purposes, non-Micmac-speakers would definitely have to start with the glossary/pronunciation guide at the back of the book before beginning-- for there is a word that is on the first page that hasn't got its pronunciation with it. That's the only weakness I see with this in sharing it with non-indigenous kids-- for indigenous kids this own voices book would be 5 stars. Still one I wish I could have shared with my son when he was younger! ( )
  bunnyjadwiga | Nov 6, 2021 |
Loved reading this book.

Flett's illustrations are so lovely and particularly vibrant on the page. I love how she uses patterns in her works and I love how she renders flowers and little details like insects and petals so artfully. The opposition between the blue sky and the green grass was wonderful and I loved the little kids' boots most of all.

This is about a grandma who takes her children foraging for mushrooms and wild celery root. It teaches Salish language from Interior BC and is a wonderful resource to have for First Nations children. There's a pronunciation guide in the back but frequently the words are spelt phonetically so the reader can teach themselves.

This was such a lovely read for Spring and my heart feels full. ( )
  lydia1879 | Feb 1, 2020 |
Yayah (grandmother) and her scmém'iʔt (children) go foraging for certain foods in this sweetly educational picture-book from Nicola I. Campbell, a Canadian children's author of Interior Salish and Métis ancestry, and Cree-Métis illustrator Julie Flett. In each scene, various words from the Nłeʔkepmxcín language - also known as the Thompson language, Nłeʔkepmxcín is an Interior Salishan tongue spoken in the Nicola Valley of British Columbia - are introduced and used in context in the story, together with a pronunciation guide provided by the characters themselves. This works quite well with the storytelling structure of the book, as Yayah is teaching her grandchildren their language, in addition to teaching them how to identify and harvest various edible plants...

Having greatly enjoyed Campbell's previous picture-books, from the deeply moving Shi-shi-etko to the sweet Grandpa's Girls, I was quite excited to pick up A Day with Yayah, especially after an online friend particularly recommended it to me. I was even more eager once I realized that it was illustrated by Flett, whose Lii Yiiboo Nayaapiwak lii Swer: L'alfabet di Michif / Owls See Clearly at Night: A Michif Alphabet is a personal favorite, and whose work is always beautiful to behold. I was not disappointed, finding this one both educational and engaging, not to mention absolutely beautiful. I don't know that it really touched me emotionally, the way some of Campbell's other stories have done, but it was nevertheless lovely. Flett's artwork is gorgeous (as always), and I particularly appreciated the decorative end-papers, both front and rear, which appear to be of a different kind of paper than the other pages, and which feature beautiful plants, and a eye-catching yellow bird. There is a clear didactic purpose here - to teach some basic Nłeʔkepmxcín vocabulary - but that's more than fine, given the nature of that purpose, and the way it is integrated into a fun story. Recommended to anyone interested in the Nłeʔkepmxcín language, and fellow fans of Campbell and Flett. ( )
  AbigailAdams26 | Nov 21, 2019 |
This story carefully balances light linguistic instruction with entertainment. The author provides readers with a unique look at an endangered language and integrates it into a tender story about a family's day out. The collage like illustrations highlight the simplicity and beauty of nature. ( )
  EMiMIB | Jun 27, 2019 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Nicola I. Campbellprimary authorall editionscalculated
Flett, JulieIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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On an outing in Nicola Valley, British Columbia, a Native American family forages for herbs and mushrooms while the grandmother passes down her language and knowledge to her young grandchildren. Includes glossary.

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