Reading Can Be Ono (Delicious)! Food and family is a big part of Hawaiian culture. Hawaiian ohana (family) gather together and use meals as a form of celebration throughout life, from birthdays to funerals and every occasion in between. At a young age, keiki already know all about best plate lunch!
Spending family time together is important and reading together is a great way to encourage a child’s development. Even better, when the subject matter is food reading can be ono (delicious)! Here are four fun children’s books to read with your keiki, all about Hawaiian culture and food!
Plenty Saimin (by Feng Feng Hutchins and illustrated by Adriano F. Abatayo III) is an endearing story about friends and family coming together. And as Hawaii families know, there’s nothing more comforting than a big bowl of saimin!
Hawaii’s Food Trucks on the Go! (by Beth Greenway and illustrated by Jamie Mexkel Tablason) is a modern take on Hawaii cuisine. Follow the food trucks on a little tour of the islands, along with their specialties and you’ll be hungry for more at the end of the book!
Okazu at the Zoo (by Laurie Ide and illustrated by Daniel Kanekuni) is an entertaining rhyming book for little ones. Lots of animals and descriptions of bento lunches, with a great glossary of Hawaiian foods in the back.
Grandpa’s Mixed-Up Luau (by Tammy Paikai and illustrated by Don Robinson) is one of my favorites. Who doesn’t have an older relative that’s just a little bit hard of hearing? In this book it makes for a hilarious and fun meal!