Mario Goes to the Museum
Besides being beautifully illustrated, “Mario Goes to the Museum’ serves to begin powerful conversations between children and the adults who read to them. Author Rebecca Dupas offers a question guide to push readers to think critically about Mario’s experiences and the lessons we can all learn from Mario's trip to the museum. While exploring, Mario finds a heightened sense of pride. Rebecca’s goal is to help all children feel like they too are “precious items”.
Rebecca describes Mario’s character as a pleasant surprise. Shortly after completing her doctoral program, she began to write creatively again. “Mario Goes to the Museum“ emerged as a perfect blend of her passions. His fictional experience pulls from her role as a former classroom teacher, museum educator, and researcher of diversity training and education.
“I wanted to tell the story of a young boy who visits a museum for the first time and to highlight that museums are wonderful but often intimidating places for children and specifically for children of color. At the same time, it was important for me to create a narrative about a beautiful bond between a father and son while addressing Mario's exposure to African history and American Slavery. The story is layered just as I hope the conversations around it will be.” - Rebecca Dupas
This is a wonderfully written and illustrated book. It reads like a fun and educational journey to prepare a child for what to expect when heading to the museum and a how-to narrative for a parent/guardian/carer taking a child on that trip.
There are parts of this book that are surprisingly moving, and it is evident that careful attention was paid to every image in this book. This is a wonderful addition to any child's library.
C. HAYDEN via Amazon
Mario arrived in Canada yesterday and introduced some very important topics to my seven-year olds! They loved the images and could relate the story to their own museum visits. I’m so thankful for the gentle introduction to the topic of slavery...
C. ENGELHARDT via Facebook
I especially like the questionaire in the back of the book. That's one of the skills I've been working on with my kids: comprehension. The kids love the story too.
M. Shifaw via Instagram
This is an engaging, educational, and moving book about one child’s journey to understand history - and his place in it - during his first trip to a museum. I loved the relationship between Mario and his dad! I enjoyed watching Mario learn why there are rules and then to begin feeling more comfortable in a space that could very easily be overwhelming. So, in addition to being entertaining, I could see this book easily being useful as a “prep” for families taking their kid(s) to a museum for the first time.
The illustrations are simply stunning! Absolutely gorgeous. I can only imagine what this book means for Black children to be able to see themselves in its pages. I’m White and I can’t wait to introduce my future children to Mario one day so that they can learn from him.
In so many ways, this book teaches empathy, curiosity, and love!
J. Newsome via Amazon