And then there is the Banned Book Week

Did you know that this is the Banned book Week?

From the early classics to some recent books, the list grows. Or at least the discussion around it. A blanket ban on some , a proposed one on a few and arguments all along.

From The story of Ferdinand (1936) to the more recent talk around the book ‘I am Jazz’ By Jessica Herthel,(2014) children’s book authors have had a political voice. And how can they not! Munro’s book about the bull Ferdinand was banned in Spain as it was considered anti regime  and showed his political leanings. ‘I am Jazz’ is a real life story of a transgender child Jazz Jennings, who has become a spokesperson for transkids everywhere. This beautiful and sensitively written book has been debated upon. Should we or shouldn’t we share!

In the end, it’s important for all voices to be heard even though some issues might be non-negotiable for us. What we need to do is give children a critical lens to look at what they read.

Take a look at the hundreds of books that have been banned or challenged over the years –



Reading Caterpillar Toddler Book Club starts on 23rd July

The book club for Toddlers (2 years to 3 years) starts next week, 23rd July and will meet on Thursdays for 7 weeks till  the third week of September. 

The series ‘Fun With Looking’ will explore books that excite visual imagination and visual experience. We will explore books where images are as vital as words. The art activity will focus on process not product.


This book club will be led by Deeksha Natha. She is an art critic and curator, currently the Director of Artreach and Fellow at the National Museum. She is the desk editor of Art AsiaPacific. Trained in art history, arts policy and contemporary theory she recalls loving repetitive writing exercises in school, they allowed her to explore the high and low points of typeset. Looking back at her own childhood, as she travels the mysterious and strange land of parenting, Deeksha recalls numerous, often painful visits to museums. Promising to herself the tyranny of looking would end with the end of childhood, the irony is that as an adult her happy place is an exhibition! And so she inflicts the same tyranny on her young boys and is amused at their often contradicting responses. Love it and hate it, they are never indifferent and their favourite game is to make stories of the images. 


This is an accompanied group, a parent or a caregiver- the child is comfortable must accompany the child. The session starts at 4 pm, please do be on time, so that your child has time to settle down . You are more than welcome to drop in 10-15 minutes early. Please do dress the children in old clothes as we will be doing projects using paints. It is always nice when children bring in their books to share, if you like you can bring it in the first session and leave it with us so we can bring out each child’s book one by one during the sessions (Do write their names). 

The Schedule is : Thursdays @ 4 to 5 pm, Group Size- 8 children


23rd July


30th July 


6th August – no session


13th August


20th August


27th August

3rd September- no session


10th September


17th September

The fee for this term is Rs.4500. Do let us know by email if you would like to sign up for the upcoming sessions . The Reading Caterpillar Library is in Nizamuddin West.

 A little bit about us:

Reading caterpillar is a library and a book club. Story hours are a weekly feature in the library and as illustrations  are an integral part of children’s books, Art is an important element at Reading Caterpillar. The books are always chosen keeping in mind the content, the quality of the drawing and the interests that children can be sensitised to at a young age. 

Drop in a mail at JOIN@READINGCATERPILLAR.COM to join the library. 

Summer Program 2015

Reading Caterpillar Summer Program 2015

We have a buzzing summer ahead! New books on our shelves, workshops starting 11th May, visits by author, illustrators, storytellers AND artists! Come to the Library- do check / for the library schedule and joining details.

The Summer Program – Children can join in all the workshops or you can choose a specific modules/week. Please mail in at to register or know more.

Ages : 2 to 4

Summer Program 2 to 4 years

Ages: 4 to 7

summer program 4 to 7

Ages: 7 plus to 10+

Summer Program 2015


 Details of the workshop –

 Age- 2 to 4 year

The World Of Eric Carle (Book and Art)

Illustrations are an integral part of children’s literature, attracting a child to the book. The pictures sometimes convey so much more than words. And Eric Carle Does it best! His books are a delight – full of imagination and gorgeous art, they celebrates Art and Imagination and are a visual treat enabling us to create projects that explore multiple mediums and activities, which particularly tap into their visual and creative sensibilities. These three days will be filled full of Eric Carle’s and his inspiration, Leo Lioni’s stories and process-based art.

Group Size- 14

Clay-tastic Mornings

Clay is a medium of art! The object of this program is to sensitize children to this medium and capture their playfulness and spontaneity, converting the same into small objects from their imagination. The advantage of ‘clay’ is that it can take impressions of any kind, be it natural- including hands, tree barks, leaves or man-made! And in the process inspiring children to create interesting tiles/murals.

Group Size- 10

Giant projects and little hands –

Rolls of paper, big brushes, sloshes of colour, knees deep in paint, little hands create giant projects together with their friends. Taking impressions with their hands, or things we find around. Walking in the paint, feeling and kneading, the process becomes the project.

Group Size 10

 Ages- 4+ to 7 years

 A Book Week at the Library:  Stories of the world-

A Story from here and a story from there but IT’s only a story! We bring to you the golden box of ‘Stories of the world’ this May.

 Our favourite theme, it is one of the best and absolutely fun introduction to different cultures. We love coming back every summer to work on this theme with newer stories, bringing in new books every year to showcase different cultures! This time we will also be introducing Oral Traditions of telling Tales. We will share with the little ones stories from across the world, books from different places, and poems from all over. Large rolls of paper, some unusual materials, masks and maps, Some interesting facts, pictures, landscape and more.

  • Introducing Oral Narratives and other visual forms of storytelling in different cultures
  • And the artwork will be inspired from the city / country from which the story originates.
  • Postcard rings – some children who have been coming the last few summers might have these. Bring it! We’ll add more to the collection.

Group Size 12

 ‘The Artist Series’ Artists, their stories and their art –

Artists tell their stories through their art. We will be sharing stories for children from the lives of these artists and then exploring their art in fun and interactive projects. The Artists we have chosen this summer are –

  • Andy Warhol
  • Jackson Pollock
  • S.H. Raza
  • Jamini Roy

Each of their styles make for very interesting projects for children.

Group Size 12

Wonders of waste –Recycled art project

Bring in all the waste you can and let’s turn it into something we can reuse! Let’s look around and see what we can recycle! Or can we turn it into art?

An empty can, a bottle of milk, a worn out tyre, a bouncy ball and newspapers too, maybe a roll, or a cap or two, cartons galore, buttons, shoes and rags to go.  Clothespins, buttons, bubble wrap and many others all had useful lives as they were originally envisioned. Now these materials and many more will find a second life as a favorite project at this workshop.

Group Size 10

 Ages – 8 to 10+ years

 ‘A Neighbourhood revisited’ with Samina

Where does the Reading Caterpillar live? Who are its friends and neighbours? Who gives it shade? Who brings it new stories? Join this workshop to observe, talk, record, draw and write about the Reading Caterpillar’s neighbourhood with author and filmmaker Samina Mishra. Over 4 days, children will play and work with words, pictures and sounds to create a narrative account of the neighbourhood that is home to the library.

Facilitators: Samina Mishra

Group Size: 10

 ‘Fly over your neighborhood’ : make your own Story Tapestry –

This is a wonderful project– a visual representation of what children see in their mind’s eye. Inspired by the African tradition of quilting their stories, we will sketch our stories out on cloth and the put it all together as a tapestry. Illustrator Priya Kuriyan will be joining in the workshop to help us illustrate our stories- translating our words, images into visuals.

Facilitators: Rabani, Priya Kuriyan and Prerna

Group Size: 10

 The workshop A Neighourhood revisited’ with Samina Is about putting the visuals that you see around you in to words, the second workshop ‘Fly over your neighborhood’ – make your story tapestry, is about translating the images and perceptions of different places that we carry within us, into visuals.

 These two workshops offer not only an interesting perspective to children but also an opportunity to work with really interesting people. Though children can join in either/ or of the workshops, joining in both the workshops will be a great way to look at the project as a whole.

‘The Modern Masters’ Artists, their stories and Art-

Artists tell their stories through their art. In this five-day workshop, we will hear stories and look at the art of some of our Modern Masters. This summer we have chosen

  • Pablo Picasso,
  • Andy Warhol and
  • Frida Kahlo.

These three artists, from different parts of the world have been a defining force in the world of Art. We look forward to delving into their art through their life stories- learning about what they painted and how…..We will paint using their palette of colors, techniques and inspirations, sharing their artwork with the children.

 Facilitators: Prerna Sood, Rabani, Group Size: 10


About the Facilitators:

Samina Mishra– She is a favorite at Reading caterpillar! Samina Mishra is a documentary filmmaker and writer with a special interest in media for children and has been published by Tulika, Young Zubaan and Scholastic. She makes films, write, teach and conduct workshops to make room for multiple stories of the world.

Priya Kuriyan- She is a children’s book illustrator, comic book artist and an animator. She has illustrated numerous children’s books – including Growing Up in Pandupur for Young Zubaan – for a variety of Indian publishers and currently lives in New Delhi. Priya is a graduate from India’s prestigious National Institute of Design(NID). Take a look at some of her work at and

 Rabani Garg– She has been conducting reading programs and story sessions at various schools and libraries and children’s literature festivals. She is also the founding member and on the editorial team of the Children’s magazine Thinkling.

Prerna Sood She is an architect by profession. But loves to work on different art projects with children, where they can explore multiple mediums. She runs a private architecture practice nilaA out of her design studio in New Delhi.


Stories that travel!




photo 1

Giant Projects for little hands!



Wonderful World of Waste




Words with Samina Mishra



Exploring Picasso



The Indian Masters at NGMA


Reading Caterpillar’s Book recommendations for ages 3 to 6

Some drool worthy books put together in a list just for you and your child :). We recommend that you get your hands on these right away or come to the Library!! Thank you to the very hard working Prerna Sood for putting this together.

1. Gaston by Kelly DiPucchio                                                                                                           (



A bulldog and a poodle learn that family is about love, not appearances in this adorable doggy tale. This is the story of four puppies: Fi-Fi, Foo-Foo, Ooh-La-La, and Gaston. Gaston works the hardest at his lessons on how to be a proper pooch. He sips—never slobbers! He yips—never yaps! And he walks with grace—never races! Gaston fits right in with his poodle sisters.



  1. Goldilocks and the 3 Dinosaurs: As Retold by Mo Willems by Mo Willems


2Goldilocks and the Three Dinosaurs is a new take on the fairy-tale classic Goldilocks and the Three Bears. Once upon a time, there were three hungry Dinosaurs: Papa Dinosaur, Mama Dinosaur . . . and a Dinosaur who happened to be visiting from Norway.

One day—for no particular reason—they decided to tidy up their house, make the beds, and prepare pudding of varying temperatures. And then—for no particular reason—they decided to go . . . someplace else. They were definitely not setting a trap for some succulent, unsupervised little girl.


  1. The Lion and the Bird by Marianna Dubuc


One autumn day, a lion finds a wounded bird in his garden. With the departure of the bird’s flock, the lion decides that it’s up to him to care for the bird. He does and the two become fast friends. Nevertheless, the bird departs with his flock the following autumn. What will become of Lion and what will become of their friendship?

  1. The Book with No Pictures by B.J. Novak




You might think a book with no pictures seems boring and serious. Except . . . here’s how books work. Everything written on the page has to be said by the person reading it aloud. Even if the words say . . .BLORK. Or BLUURF.

Even if the words are a preposterous song about eating ants for breakfast, or just a list of astonishingly goofy sounds like BLAGGITY BLAGGITY and GLIBBITY GLOBBITY.

  1. Once upon an Alphabet by Oliver Jeffers



From an Astronaut who’s afraid of heights, to a Bridge that ends up burned between friends, to a Cup stuck in a cupboard and longing for freedom, Once Upon an Alphabet is a creative tour de force from A through Z. Slyly funny in a way kids can’t resist, and gorgeously illustrated in a way readers of all ages will pour over, this series of interconnected stories and characters explores the alphabet in a way that will forever raise the bar.



  1. What do you do with an idea? by Kobi Yamada



This is the story of one brilliant idea and the child who helps to bring it into the world. As the child’s confidence grows, so does the idea itself. And then, one day, something amazing happens.
This is a story for anyone, at any age, who s ever had an idea that seemed a little too big, too odd, too difficult. It s a story to inspire you to welcome that idea, to give it some space to grow, and to see what happens next. Because your idea isn’t going anywhere. In fact, it’s just getting started.

The Most Magnificent Thing by Ashley Spires



The book is about an unnamed girl and her very best friend, who happens to be a dog. The girl has a wonderful idea. “She is going to make the most MAGNIFICENT thing! She knows just how it will look. She knows just how it will work. All she has to do is make it, and she makes things all the time. Easy-peasy!” But making her magnificent thing is anything but easy, and the girl tries and fails, repeatedly. Eventually, the girl gets really, really mad. She is so mad, in fact, that she quits. But after her dog convinces her to take a walk, she comes back to her project with renewed enthusiasm and manages to get it just right.

  1. Only One You by Linda Kranz



There’s only one you in this great big world. Make it a better place. Adri’s mama and papa share some of the wisdom they have gained through the years with their eager son. Their words, simple and powerful, are meant to comfort and guide him as he goes about exploring the world. This exquisitely illustrated book explodes with color and honest insights. Kranz’s uniquely painted rockfish, set against vibrant blue seas, make an unforgettable and truly special impression. Only One You will inspire parents and children of all ages as they swim through the sea of life.


  1. Miss Rumphius by Barbara Cooney


Barbara Cooney’s story of Alice Rumphius, who longed to travel the world, live in a house by the sea, and do something to make the world more beautiful, has a timeless quality that resonates with each new generation. The countless lupines that bloom along the coast of Maine are the legacy of the real Miss Rumphius, the Lupine Lady, who scattered lupine seeds everywhere she went. Miss Rumphius received the American Book Award in the year of publication.



  1. Extra Yarn by Mac Barnett


10This is the story of how a young girl and her box of magical yarn transform a community. With spare, gently humorous illustrations and a palette that moves from black-and-white to a range of color, this modern fairy tale has the feel of a new classic.




  1. Sleep like a Tiger by Mary Logue



In this magical bedtime story, the lyrical narrative echoes a Runaway Bunny – like cadence: “Does everything in the world go to sleep?” the little girl asks. In sincere and imaginative dialogue between a not-at-all sleepy child and understanding parents, the little girl decides “in a cocoon of sheets, a nest of blankets,” she is ready to sleep, warm and strong, just like a tiger. The Caldecott Honor artist Pamela Zagarenski’s rich, luminous mixed-media paintings effervesce with odd, charming details that non-sleepy children could examine for hours.


  1. Those Darn Squirrels by Adam Rubin


Old Man Fookwire is a grump who only likes to paint pictures of birds that visit his backyard. The problem is, they fly south every winter, leaving him sad and lonely. So he decides to get them to stay by putting up beautiful birdfeeders filled with seeds and berries. Unfortunately, the squirrels like the treats, too, and make a daring raid on the feeders. The conflict escalates—until the birds depart (as usual), and the squirrels come up with a plan that charms the old grump.



  1. The Flat Rabbit by Bardur Oscarrson


 13When a dog and a rat come upon a rabbit flattened on the road in their neighborhood, they contemplate her situation, wondering what they should do to help her. They decide it can’t be much fun to lie there; she should be moved. But how? And to where? Finally, the dog comes up with an inspired and unique idea and they work together through the night to make it happen. Once finished, they can’t be positive, but they think they have done their best to help the flat rabbit get somewhere better than the middle of the road where they found her. Sparely told with simple artwork, The Flat Rabbit treats the concept of death with a sense of compassion and gentle humor — and a note of practicality. In the end, the dog’s and the rat’s caring, thoughtful approach results in an unusual yet perfect way to respect their departed friend.


  1. Waiting is not easy by Mo Willems




Gerald is careful. Piggie is not.
Piggie cannot help smiling. Gerald can.
Gerald worries so that Piggie does not have to.
Gerald and Piggie are best friends.
In Waiting Is Not Easy!, Piggie has a surprise for Gerald, but he is going to have to wait for it. And Wait. And wait some more…


  1. Wild by Emily Hughes



In this book, we meet a little girl who has known nothing but nature from birth—she was taught to talk by birds, to eat by bears, and to play by foxes. She is unashamedly, irrefutably, irrepressibly wild. That is, until she is snared by some very strange animals that look oddly like her, but they don’t talk right, eat right, or play correctly. She’s puzzled by their behavior and their insistence on living in these strange concrete structures: there’s no green here, no animals, no trees, no rivers.