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A Dollop of Ghee and a Pot of Wisdom       

Chitra Soundar, illus. Uma Krishnaswamy
Walker Books
Age 5-8

A Dollop of Ghee and a Pot of Wisdom we meet Prince Veera and his best friend Suku as they find clever ways to deal with injustice and greed in the kingdom. This is a book of four amusing ‘trickster’ tales based on Indian folk tales which introduce a taste of Indian culture, tradition and also food, in particular the mouthwatering wafting scents of cinnamon and cardomon.

Author Chitra Soundar introduces the book here


Share the story

Read Aloud
Although children developing experience as readers will be able to read this book independently the  four chapters each with a separate story make it a great book to read aloud on successive sessions. This would also give you the chance to talk together about the stories.

Talk about the book
➤Talk about your favourite story in the collection
➤Talk about the ways Prince Veera and Suku trick the villains in the stories
➤ What would you say to the characters if you met them?
➤ Talk about any unfamiliar vocabulary and phrases eg ‘wise counsel’, ‘discriminate’ ‘swindle’ and ‘bailiff’ also Indian words for clothing or types of food such as dhoti and ghee if they are unfamiliar to your child.

Things to make and do

Be storytellers
Choose  one of the stories and retell it together, taking turns by telling a bit each. You might need to remind yourselves of the main things that happen in the story first by looking back at the book. You could choose to tell the story from a particular point of view eg Suku’s version.

Draw a scene
Encourage your child to choose a favourite scene from each of the stories to draw. Talk with your child about what they have drawn and what they liked about each of these scenes.

Role play a conversation between characters
Act out a conversation from the story together – for example when Prince Veera is holding court and making judgements.

Become a spice expert
If you already have (or are able to borrow or buy) some spices and ingredients often used in Indian sweets and biscuits collect them together – for example cinnamon, cardoman, coconut and cashew nuts). Spend time smelling the spices or tasting the nuts. See if your child can close their eyes and still recognise which is which.

Do some cooking
Make Indian biscuits or sweets together. Choose a recipe, collect together the ingredients if you have them or visit the supermarket together to find them.
Have a tea party and invite friends or other members of the family to share them.
37 Indian sweet recipes
7 Indian Biscuit Recipes to Make and Enjoy

Find out More

Find out more about author and storyteller Chitra Soundar. Chitra Soundar | Dreamer, Bookworm, Writer, Author, Storyteller

Read more tales about Prince Veera and his friend Suku
A Jar of Pickles and a Pinch of Justice
A Sliver of Moon and a Shard of Truth

Other books by Chitra Soundar include
Nikhil and Jay save the Day

Sona Sharma Saving Planet Earth – see Lovemybooks activity page

Pattan’s Pumpkin – see Lovemybooks activity page

You’re Snug with Me – see Lovemybooks activity page