If you're on the hunt for some new children's books to add to your bookshelves, we've compiled a list of suggestions that are as informative as they are enjoyable and will help you to teach young minds about race, racism and diversity.
Educating ourselves is one of the most important ways that we can ensure we're making tangible changes going forward. However, while it is important that we are educating ourselves and addressing our own prejudices and shortcomings, it's equally important that we are equipping younger generations with the right information and tools to do better than us.
At a loss as to how best to go about it? Well, what child doesn't love a bedtime story? Changing up your kid-friendly reading list and choosing books that feature black heroes and characters is a great way to start. Our online worlds are saturated with information at the moment and there are countless places to find useful resources to get you going. I've compiled a few below so they're easily accessible and you can tick them off as you go.
The Everymom is described as "an online resource for the modern mom" and they've compiled a detailed list of 33 books that put people of colour at their centre. On the list you'll find titles such as Mae Among the Stars by Roda Ahmed and Little Legends: Exceptional Men in Black History by Vashti Harrison along with several others.
As the website puts it:
"When children are surrounded by diversity, it becomes a regular part of their life. So, be vigilant. Start young. Talk about hard things. Learn with your kids. Do the work. It’s always worth it."
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Teaching kids about race and diversity is ALWAYS important but right now is a crucial opportunity to highlight and teach kids about the vital contributions that have come from our Black peers. Today, we are sharing our favorite books featuring Black heroes and characters that every kid should read. Head to the link in our bio for all 33!⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ It's vital to have conversations about race with your kids. Use these books as a way to start the conversation!
Below you'll find a helpful thread with countless suggestions for children's books that discuss race and racism. As a teacher and educator, Brittany (or @antisocialbritt as she goes by on Twitter) took it upon herself to recommend a number of different books that she's found helpful in helping to explain complex topics to little minds. Some of the titles mentioned include:
- Sulwe by Lupita Nyong'o
- Let It Shine: Stories of Black Women Freedom Fighters by Andrea Davis Pinkney
- My Hair Is a Garden by Cozbi A. Cabrera
- Happy In Our Skin by Fran Manushkin
- Chocolate Milk, Por Favor! Celebrating Diversity with Empathy by Maria Dismondy
Teacher in me had to do this..
CHILDREN’S BOOKS THAT DISCUSS RACE & RACISM THREAD:
— Brittany (@wanderingbritt_) June 2, 2020
Today's Parent is another parenting website and they've put together a list of 27 books to help you get your kids thinking about racism. Featured on the list you'll find the likes of A is for Activist by Innosanto Nagara, I am Jacki Robinson by Brad Meltzer, Rosa by Nikki Giovanni and Baseball Saved Us by Ken Mochizuki. They also suggest regular books of the week (such as The Proudest Blue by Ibtihaj Muhammad pictured below), so your reading list will never fall short.
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Happy Thursday! This week’s #TPBookOfTheWeek is “The Proudest Blue” written by Olympic bronze medalist Ibtihaj Muhammad (@ibtihajmuhammad) and S.K. Ali (@skalibooks) and illustrated by Hatem Aly (@metahatem). While Faizah is excited for the first day of school, she’s more excited for her older sister, Asiya, because it will be her first day of hijab. To Faizah, Asiya’s hijab is the most perfect shade of blue: “like the ocean and the sky, no line between them, saying hello with a loud wave.” Faizah is so proud of her sister that it hurts to hear people laugh and call Asiya’s hijab a tablecloth. Recalling their Mama's advice, these two sisters show us what it means to be the bigger person. Check out our stories for an inside look!
A quick Google search will bring up tonnes of other suggestions on useful children's books and Amazon also update their most popular products hourly so you can see what other people are buying if you're still unsure what to go for.
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