Kayla: A Modern-Day Princess by Deedee Cummings

Plan to Follow Your Dreams on Multicultural Children’s Book Day #ReadYourWorld – #readilearn

Today, the last Friday in January, is Multicultural Children’s Book Day. I am delighted to participate once again by spreading the word about Multicultural children’s books.

In this post I review the picture book Kayla: A Modern-Day Princess, which will be released in the northern spring of 2021 by Make a Way Media, publishers of diverse books.  The book can be pre-ordered from their website. The author gifted me a copy to review.

About Kayla: A Modern-Day Princess

Kayla: A Modern-Day Princess, written by Deedee Cummings and illustrated by Charlene Mosley, was inspired by the life of Deedee’s own real-life princess, Broadway actress Kayla Pecchioni.

Kayla’s mum is a busy working mum. She wakes Kayla before she leaves for work in the mornings and asks her about her plans for the day. She tells Kayla that plans give you hope and hope gives you dreams. Often, Kayla doesn’t see her mother again as she gets home after Kayla has gone to bed.

But one day, Dad tells Kayla she can stay up late because her mum has some exciting news. When her mum tells Kayla that she has received a promotion that she worked hard to earn, she also gives Kayla a tiara and tells her that it is to always remind her that she is special, regardless of what others might do, say or think. Kayla went to sleep believing the world to be a magical place and knowing that, with a plan, she could make her dreams come true.

This book is the first in a five-part series about Kayla.

What I like about this book

I wasn’t aware of Kayla Pecchioni before reading this book but am delighted to learn about her and her determination to be successful. The story shows the importance of family in developing confidence and providing opportunities for young people to be who they want to be.

Like many, Kayla’s mother felt guilty about not having more time to spend with her daughter. However, the book shows that love and encouragement and being a good role model is equally important as time.

As author Deedee Cummings says, “Daughters learn their place in the world by watching their mothers claim theirs.”

Many young children will be able to identify with Kayla’s situation and be encouraged to feel the same sense of worth, determination and possibility as Kayla does. I especially like the focus on growth and determination to achieve your goals and dreams.

About Multicultural Children’s Book Day

Multicultural Children's Book Day
Used courtesy of Multicultural Children’s Book Day

Continue reading: Plan to Follow Your Dreams on Multicultural Children’s Book Day #ReadYourWorld – readilearn

34 thoughts on “Plan to Follow Your Dreams on Multicultural Children’s Book Day #ReadYourWorld – #readilearn

  1. Mabel Kwong

    I really enjoyed reading your review on Kayla: A Modern Day Princess by Deedee Cummings. That cover and illustration speaks volumes in terms or representation and diversity. For some children in certain cultures, their parents might set a great example by working hard to earn a better, more comfortable living. It sounds like even without seeing her mother much in the day, Kayla is very much inspired by her to become who she wants to be. For some CALD communities, opportunities might be hard to come by – but you can always make a start by dreaming an putting your best foot forward. Thank you for sharing, Norah. Hope all is well up there 🙂

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    1. Norah Post author

      Thank you for your wonderful comment, Mabel. I appreciate your perspective. It does sound like Deedee and Kayla have a wonderful mother-daughter relationship with a lot of love between them. I think you are right about making a start by dreaming and putting your best foot forward.
      All well here for now, and down there with you, I hope. 🙂

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      1. Mabel Kwong

        Really not always do you come by a culturally diverse book that showcases positive, encouraging family relationships. Your blog (and Readilearn) is really a wonderful resource for classrooms. Good to hear you are good up there. Summer has been wonderful here so far and so glad things are under control here 🙂

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        1. Norah Post author

          Thank you for your kind words, Mabel. I think the number and range of diverse books is increasing. The Multicultural Children’s Book Day website has some wonderful resources and lists of books.
          Happy Chinese New Year to you. I believe the celebrations have begun. I am still very grateful for the wonderful interview you did for readilearn so many years ago.
          I’m pleased your summer has been enjoyable. Autumn is on the way. Enjoy! 🙂

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          1. Mabel Kwong

            It was a pleasure doing an interview and contributing to Readilearn. Readilearn really is such a great educational resource. Thank you for your well wishes, Norah. Month-long celebrations have already begun here – bit toned down but still celebrated wholeheartedly. Happy Chinese New Year to you too 🙂

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            1. Norah Post author

              Thank you for all your kindnesses, Mabel. The world is a better place with you in it. Best wishes for your New Year celebrations and the year ahead.

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      1. Marsha

        Yes, I’m sure there is a lot of guilt there. Tulare County Office of Education had a program for girls to come to work with their moms for one day every year. Some children came more often than that and helped out or studied while their moms worked. My mom didn’t work when we were young, but she did volunteer social work with Head Start and I always went with her. My great-grandmother always took me on her Avon route with her. Girls need to see busy women. 🙂

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        1. Norah Post author

          What wonderful experiences for you, assisting your mum and your great-grandmother, Marsha. I agree with you about girls needing to see busy women. Boys do too. My son accompanied me on my Avon round and in other things I did. I ran classes at home for children and parents (like a playgroup but supporting parents helping their children learn) when my daughter was young – she was a part of that. I did it for her – and me. I later ran other classes for children too, and she was always a part of them. When she left school and I was back in the classroom, she’d often come and help me out on her days off. She is now a senior lecturer at university and last year won an Excellence in Teaching award. Needless to say, I’m a very proud mumma.

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          1. Marsha

            Wow! That is so impressive, Norah. You have much to be proud of. Wow again! The more I get to know you, the more impressed I am with how much you accomplish. Our sermon was on that last week. I do admire and respect people who accomplish a lot even though that is not the total making of a person. It drives me and I’m sure drives a lot of other people. You have done so much with your life and you remain a humble and giving person. Thanks for being a friend. 🙂

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            1. Norah Post author

              I don’t know, Marsha. I have never thought of anything I’ve done as being particularly impressive. I just do what I do, which really isn’t much. I do appreciate your kind words and support though. Thank you for being a friend. SMAG. 🌻

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  2. viviankirkfield

    Wonderful post, Norah! I’ll be posting for #MCBD also…it’s such a fabulous initiative! And the book you reviewed is all about what I love – helping inspire kids to follow their dreams…because nothing is impossible if you can imagine it!

    Liked by 1 person

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    1. Norah Post author

      Thank you, Vivian. I look forward to your post. I know you are a wonderful supporter of and sponsor for #MCBD and in fact have written wonderful multicultural books yourself, some with a similar theme to that of Kayla’s story. Let’s toast to imagination and making dreams come true!

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