The rise in Indigenous storytelling — for kids

This week on Unreserved, we dive into the explosion of Indigenous authors wading into children's literature — and the increasing number of books being translated into Indigenous languages.
This week, we're talking about the rise of Indigenous children's books — and how important it is for Indigenous kids to see themselves reflected. (Anna Lazowski/CBC)

February is I Love to Read Month in Manitoba — and what better way to celebrate than by exploring children's books written by Indigenous authors?

This week on Unreserved, we dive into the explosion of Indigenous authors wading into children's literature — and the increasing number of books being translated into Indigenous languages.

Rosanna and Sonya Ballantyne visit a Cree-immersion classroom at Isaac Brock School in Winnipeg to read from Ballantyne's new book, Kerri Berry Lynn, about a Cree girl with seven dogs.

"Bear for Breakfast," written by Robert Munsch and illustrated by Jay Odjick. (Scholastic Canada/Supplied)

Author Jenny Kay Dupuis always wanted to have her book, I Am Not a Number, translated into Nishnaabemwin. She explains why it was important to have the book translated into the language her grandmother was punished for speaking at residential school.

Algonquin artist and writer Jay Odjick is set to publish Bear For Breakfast, his second collaboration with Robert Munsch. It's one of many that are set to be released by Scholastic Canada in the coming months — after their callout to Indigenous writers for book pitches.

Cree author David A. Robertson writes books for kids of all ages, and as a father of five he has a bit of experience combing through the kid's section of bookstores. He joins us to share a few of his favourite family reads.

Dallas Hunt's first children's book, Awâsis and the World-Famous Bannock, just hit store shelves. He joins Rosanna in the treehouse at McNally Robinson Books in Winnipeg to talk about why he wanted to write a book that incorporated the Cree language. 

This Week's Playlist:

Tanya Tagaq — Snowblind

Elisapie — Wolves Don't Live By The Rules

Harry Davies — The Bannock Song

iskwē — Will I See?