Raised in Southern California in an environment rich in Hispanic roots, Parra’s work evokes images of Mexican folk-art, architecture, and murals. A vast palette of muted, rich terra cotta, brick red, ochre, avocado green, cerulean blues, pinks, and greys bring life to the world Johnston describes in her text. Without his strongly regional artwork, Parra ‘makes’ P is for Pinata; without him it would surely be a lesser work.
Appealing to a wide range of age groups, and introducing a solid selection of cultural tidbits, historical figures, culture-shapers, I’d be hard-pressed to name a picture book better suited as a general Mexican primer.
As always, Sleeping Bear Press provides rich support resources for parents and educators. A free downloadable 25-page teaching guide extends the picture book into activities and assignments throughout the curriculum. Parents looking for some last minute Hispanic Heritage celebration ideas will find the suggestions at the Discover the World website a ready resource. Combining some of the suggested recipes, crafts, and hands-on-activities with P is for Pinata will result in an easy to plan family theme night – fun, educational, and enriching.