Today, we meet Karishma Bathla, an author out to teach little kids life lessons through books about big people. People who have made a name for themselves by doing BIG things.
Tell us more about yourself?
I am a mother, wife, daughter, sister, friend, professional and most recently, a self-published author. My foray into writing children’s books is the first step towards fulfilling my dream to become a full-time writer. Currently, my full-time job and career is in Finance. When I am not working, I love to travel, cook new dishes, read (especially to my son), spend time with my family and write.
How did you come to your passion/profession?
My passion for writing children’s books stems from two things: my love for reading and my desire to teach my son important lessons in life.
Earlier this year, my husband and I were reading books about Jeff Bezos & Tony Hsieh. My son, who is 4, would ask us to read those books to him. But, given his young age, short attention span, and no pictures to look at, he would stop listening and go back to playing.
That’s when I thought “how can I teach my son and other kids about such inspirational people while teaching them important lessons.” And, that’s how my book series “Little Kids’ Big Lessons” was born.
Tell us about your family.
I currently live in Seattle, WA with my husband and 4-year-old son. Prior to Seattle, I’ve lived in Houston, Texas and Queens, New York. My son has a variety of interests but his favorite are reading, playing sports, building with Legos and playing with his toy cars. My husband & I love to travel to different countries, spend time with our son, and discuss business ideas.
How many places have you lived? How has that affected your world view?
I have lived in three states in the U.S. – I was born & raised in New York, lived in Texas after marriage, and currently live in Washington.
There are a few principles that I live by:
- Find the good in people, irrespective of where they are from,
- Don’t let a few bad apples cloud your judgement about one culture/region,
- Respect others and learn from them,
- Work hard and always do your best,
- Think positive and positive things will happen to you, and
- Give back to those in need.
What do you think are three biggest struggles most parents go through teaching kids about Indian personalities?
I think the three biggest struggles are: (1) there is limited awareness, (2) particularly for those living in the U.S, there is limited focus on world personalities outside the US in the education system and (3) of the few there are to learn about, we only focus on a portion of those personalities (i.e. Mahatma Gandhi.)
My book series is different in that it will be about people of modern times, not the past. And, they will be about people from different countries/cultures so children will learn that you can be from anyplace and accomplish anything.
How do you suggest parents encourage kids to imbibe qualities of people from the past? How have you?
Reading. I am a big believer that reading is a powerful method to teach kids anything. This habit can, and should be, developed from a young age. When they are younger, they have a big appetite for learning and are very curious. They also learn a lot through repetition and reading the same books about such people will help to solidify the positive qualities in their minds.
Please tell us about your vision to teaching kids about the world?
My vision is to help children establish a solid foundation built on important values that will help them throughout their life.
What are three pieces of advice you would like to share with parents?
I’ve only been a parent for 4 years now and based on this little time, I can share what has worked for me:
(1) be your children’s’ friend,
(2) help them understand the difference between right & wrong and
(3) recognize their abilities and encourage them to develop those and be the best they can be.
How does one raise multicultural kids today in an ever evolving world?
The key is to highlight the similarities among cultures while acknowledging and accepting differences.
Openly discuss with them about people of other cultures and answer any questions they may have. Encourage them to read about people from different parts of the world and highlight what they can learn from those people.
Do you have anything to share with our readers?
I’ve started a book series called “Little Kids’ Big Lessons” that aims to teach young children values that will help them in life. Each book tells the story of a successful, inspirational person of today and how they have changed the world. Each book highlights a key value that has helped them become successful. The books are written in a simple, easy to read format with colorful illustrations. Both parents and children will enjoy.
My first book is called “A Curious Boy Named Jeff.” It tells the story of Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon, and how curiosity helps him to learn new things every day and the world around him.
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My second book is called “Reach For The Stars Like Kalpana.” It tells the story of Kalpana Chawla, the first Indian origin woman to go to space, and how determination helped her make her dreams come true.
I would encourage parents to get a copy of either (or both) books.
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At Raising World Children, we are on the constant look out for world changers. People who are trying in small or big ways to make the world a better place.
Find out more about Karishma here. Don’t forget to grab one of her amazing books for your kids.