Continuing the success of the My Gagana series, a second set has been released. The books introduce Sāmoan language within English language texts in a way that makes the meaning clear to the reader.
The books build language skills and Sāmoan vocabulary and include cultural references.
Each book is actually two-in-one, with the latest series including the books Isaia Says and Analia Asks, and Kuso's Clean and Sala's Surprise.
Isaia Says is based on the well-known children's game Simon Says but uses Sāmoan names for where to place your hands, while flip the book and Analia Asks is about a little girl that is collecting food for a picnic.
The other dual book sees Kuso needing a bath and thus in Kuso's Clean readers learn to name the body parts in Sāmoan, while in Sala's Surprise a little girl puts on a range of colourful clothing for a surprise for her family.
The books are wonderful for learners of the language. My two young children are learning Sāmoan at school, and these books help reinforce their learning. The use of English and Sāmoan together makes the meaning crystal clear, even if you've never heard Sāmoan before. Malaeulu includes a vocabulary and pronunciation guidance for each story, further helping learners.
But more importantly, these books are for Sāmoan children. These books put a touch of their heritage into their hands and allow them to see their culture represented in the pages.
The My Gagana series is a wonderful resource for learners, building confidence and strengthening connections to the Sāmoan culture through learning basic Gagana Sāmoa.
The series is an accessible resource that promotes Gagana Sāmoa to future generations and those who are the first teachers in their lives - their families.
Based on relatable everyday contexts, these stories have been purposely written and designed for everyone.
Reviewed by: Rebekah Lyell
OneTree House, RRP $25 each