Children’s birthday parties are very frequent in our 300 apartment housing complex. It is a difficult task to choose the right and useful birthday gift for the kids. These days children are blessed with many toys, books and dresses that anything you buy for them will only be duplicated. So, I generally gift a leisure store gift coupon (which is closer home).
Of late, I thought when you gift such a coupon the child/parent is forced to go to the shop and buy the things only from that shop and their choice is limited, what’s more they have to buy within the stipulated time since the coupon comes with an expiry date.
So ,the next option was gifting cash packet. This, we do for friends in close circles but for people whom we don’t know well. Hmmm....not a nice idea.
So, I was totally in a fix when choosing for an useful and right gift for a 5 year old boy.
I along with my son and daughter were browsing for the right gift in a 6000sft gift shop . I was lost amongst the gifts and was still clueless, when my daughter and son shouted at the same time , from the books section and said 'Karadi tales' would be the right choice.
Shre(now 13)recalled how she as a 5 year old grew up listening and reading Karadi tales apart from other books .
Yes, I too thought this was the right choice and packed the gift.
On the way back home, they both recollected the beautiful memories with Karadi tales at our ICRISAT colony home.
Karadi tales - A combo of a read along story book with lovely illustrations in simple and controlled language and an audio cassette(now DVD) with narration and lilting songs were what they would be seen with when shar was 3 and shre a 5 year old.
Shre used to slowly read the book and modulate her voice according to the audio while shar used to keep the book upside down and pretend as though he too was reading along with the audio track. Karadi tales encouraged my children to read independently and contributed to their English language learning at an early age. ( at home we spoke only in Tamil).
The best he loved was ‘Kubera meets Ganesha’ and he knew the lovely song '500 cooks’ well along with his nursery rhymes.
Those were the times when my husband would be travelling on projects to far away places for couple of months. Shre and Shar would miss their father's presence, especially at night. They would wrap around their appa’s Bermuda and his used towel, switch off the lights in the bed room and listen to Karadi tales.
They said they felt comfortable and secure with their appa’s dress, Meera and karadi’s voice.They would visualize the scenes and drift to sleep listening to 'karadi' and Meera on the tape.
Little wonder then, that they narrowed down on “ Karadi Tales'. Karadi tales along with other books has inculcated in my children the good habit of reading widely and independently with understanding and pleasure.
In today's world of nuclear families, where children don't have the luxury and warmth of the story telling sessions of their grand parents, Karadi tales plays a great role in educating tender minds with Indian heritage,culture and folk tales.
Today Karadi tales are in more attractive format and a wide range of titles have been added . Read more about it here.