When it comes to our personal bookshelves, my husband and I strongly believe that representation in literature is crucial. While no such officiallisting exists, it’s widely assumed that “classics” belong in schools while more modern literature often gets sidelined. Unfortunately in the children's book world, there are far too few stories featuring diverse characters. "They've made some strides, but … Couple the gentle story with mixed-media illustrations that both complement and accentuate Jabari’s fear and joy, and you’ve got a winning picture book to add to both school and home collections. Because the adoring paparazzi follow her wherever she goes! May is Asian Pacific American Heritage Month , and it’s the perfect time to discover some new stories about … Your email address will not be published. By Samantha Berger and illustrated by Mike Curato. Every Children’s Library Lady book list is as diverse as possible and this one is no exception. Shockingly, only 4% of children's books featured a non-white character at all. Jerome discovers something amazing – words contain magic! The past few months, I’ve been even more focused on these topics and on finding good children’s books to read with them. Children’s Books About Diversity and Inclusion (in General) 1. black boys and girls, as well as help parents talk about race with their kids. Many of the books are suitable for pre-school age children. We think you’ll love these Indian children’s books! Harriet loves playing dress up! But then the two sit down to draw, and that’s when magic happens. ALL of the above reasons are important. By Derrick Barnes and illustrated by Gordon C. James. 20 More Children’s Books with Diverse Characters 1) Carmela Full of Wishes By Matt De La Pena and illustrated by Christian Robinson This beautiful story, a testament to the power of wishes and an ode to underrepresented children around the country, is another stunner from the duo who brought us Last Stop on Market Street. Check them out below. There aren't enough diverse children's books on the shelves, according to the Cooperative Children's Book Center, which updated its data on representation this month. This week for Reading Wednesday, I asked media specialist Lauren Bercuson of Happily Ever Elephants to put together a list of books with diverse main characters. 19) I Walk with Vanessa: A Story About a Simple Act of Kindness. No matter their size or shape, words carry so much significance- not just to create change, but also to empower. 20 Children’s Books with Diverse Main Characters While it’s important for our kids to learn about different cultures and ethnicities, it’s also important for our kids to see what makes us all the same. All are Welcome, written by Alexandra Penfold and illustrated by Suzanne Kaufman. And we couldn’t be more excited! 7 books for toddlers with diverse characters It's never too early to talk about race, and reading books with a diverse cast of characters portrayed in positive and non-stereotypical ways can help toddlers and infants to normalise and celebrate difference. The below list is different and something that Feminist Books for Kids tries to do often: give our readers targeted lists of books to help them find materials that offer distinctive windows and mirrors. "Diverse books are a tiny slice of what's published," said Elizabeth Perez, a children's librarian at the San Francisco Public Library. This is a list of books featuring Indian and Indian-American characters specifically. In this sweet story, Jameson is attached to his green pants! One of the best children’s books about diversity, The Colors of Us is about a little girl named Lena who wants to paint a self-portrait using brown paint for her skin. When we share our words with the world, our impact can be magnificent! Oh, how I love you!” The parents envelop the children into hugs and they all dance together, until the weary children are lulled back to sleep with a lullaby. But he has a decision to make: if he wants to be in his cousin’s wedding, he must wear black pants instead. Ada must get to the bottom of the problem, and by utilizing the scientific method, she may discover her answers. Can she make them go away with a kiss? A gorgeous story founded in Nigerian culture, highlighting generosity, selflessness and paying it forward. This exquisite wordless picture book depicts one boy’s first experience at the Museum of Modern Art and his discovery of some of the world’s greatest artists, including Picasso, Rousseau and Matisse. Fun rhymes and goofy illustrations make this a silly – not scary – monster book guaranteed to delight all children! This beautifully illustrated book celebrates the power of imagination and one child’s determination to express herself in any way she can, be it through song, dance, drawing or building. Author Sonia Panigrahy shares many of the same values as I do to provide girls, as well as ALL children with diverse female superheroes and book characters to look up to as role models. These children's books highlight themes of empowerment, empathy, and cultural pride. Julian, a young boy, is dazzled while riding the subway – he sees three women dressed up as beautiful mermaids. And this determined young diverse main character writer proves it. I could recommend hundreds of books with diverse main characters. Think about Don Freeman's character of Lisa in "Corduroy" or Ezra Jack Keats character of Peter in "The Snowy Day," "Pet Show," and "Peter's Chair," to name a few. Most of the books listed here are recommended either for infants, toddlers, preschoolers, and … Drawn Together is a testament to the power of art to transcend words, and this stunning book perfectly encapsulates that bonds can be found and formed even when we may not share the same language. I love the way this books helps kids learn to frame an argument and explain their positions! By Tara Luebbe and Becky Cattie and illustrated by Joanne Lew-Vriethoff. THE ULTIMATE GUIDE TO DIVERSE CHILDREN’S BOOKS with multiracial characters. It is a celebration of self-confidence and self-worth, a beautiful window into one boy’s transformation that enables him to feel recognized and powerful. Kiely has no doubt that she is unbelievably famous. and wants only to sleep in her parents’ room in bed with her mom. When Lena and her mom take a walk through their neighborhood, she notices that there are many different shades of brown skin, and she begins to see her familiar world in a new way. Instead, he’s searching for Nia’s perfect birthday present! As she and her dads decorate for her super special costume party, they realize they’ve forgotten the super special party hats. By Bunmi Laditan and illustrated by Tom Knight. A stunning, wordless exploration of the harmful act of bullying, and how one simple act of kindness by an upstander can be a change agent for the entire community. News Children’s Books Need More Diverse Characters. Some of the books celebrate Pride Month, its history and the people behind it. Teaching my children about other cultures and the importance of diversity in our world has always been important to me. It’s a BOY!!! The “plots” they come up with are intriguing and insightful – and their words will give you such a significant glimpse into their minds and hearts. You will find LGBTQ characters from different backgrounds and cultures. In our library, we try to have books that use diverse characters in whatever story is being told, not just as supporting players, but as the heroes too. So many of our children are attached to an object – be it a lovey, a stuffed animal, or a favorite article of clothing. When she is tinkering at home one day, she sniffs something awful. You can also check out the Guardian’s list of 50 wonderful diverse picture books. And just who are the paparazzi? It is as clear as glass that children need to see themselves reflected in their literature in order to create a strong sense of self.So, I of course was and still am, always on the lookout for books that feature boys and girls of color. But will they be too dressed up for recess? Check out our collection of multicultural children's books (2002-present). Ryan Reynolds Can’t Assemble a Crib, Just Like Us. Nia loves her pet turtle, but sometimes she grows frustrated. A total hoot, especially for your budding fashionistas! Here I’m sharing 20 of our favorite children’s books with diverse characters and cultures. Please select whether I bother you once a day or once a week. I have a Pinterest board to go with this post: Books for Children with Progressive Messages. By Grace Byers and illustrated by Keturah A. Bobo. Creative Skirt reserves the right to use all submitted photos, In this beautiful debut, certain to become a classic, Omu makes a delicious red stew and its delectable scent travels all over the neighborhood. I’m grateful. Mommy’s Khimar exudes warmth, love and tenderness, and it is a relatable story for so many kids. That's awesome! I am creating this list of diverse children’s books because I believe it is incredibly important for all families. While it’s important for our kids to learn about different cultures and ethnicities, it’s also important for our kids to see what makes us all the same. It can be tough to find multicultural children’s books that feature characters of color that don’t completely revolve around the character’s ethnicity. To encourage conversations about race and diversity with your children, check out this list of children's books to read together as a family. Is Harriet prepared for the arctic, or will she find her way back to her dads? © Copyright 2009-2020 Creative Skirt, LLC. Your email address will not be published. In my home and classroom, we read books about all kinds of characters. Amazing Grace By Mary Hoffman, illustrated by Caroline Binch (Frances Lincoln Children's Books) The classic picture book about the little girl who loves stories and shows us that we can be anything we want to be. What she finds instead is a flock of real penguins – and they may just whisk her away. By Tammi Sauer and illustrated by Vanessa Brantley-Newton. Baby/Toddler (Ages 0 - 2) and Pre-K (Ages 3 - 5) Lola at the Library This children’s picture book with a diverse main character proves that all of us are writers — even when we can’t write letters or words quite yet! A fabulous and fun look at point of view. Required fields are marked *. But diverse books can also involve characters of color in every day situations, or children of mixed races. From the very first sentence, Barnes transports his readers right into barbershop culture through vivid details that come to life with brilliant authenticity. You'd like to get my newsletter! In this twist on the Mother Goose poem, Mary is a style maven who helps other nursery rhyme characters get their glam on. Nearly 20 years later, only 7% of kids books published in 2016 featured Asian American characters, according to the Children’s Cooperative Book Center. Poor Winifred Schnitzel can’t seem to get rid of the neighborhood monsters that creep into her room at night and desperately try to scare the daylights out of her. Ready? Jabari is quite excited to jump off the diving board at the city pool – if, of course, he can first conquer his fears. While pondering a painting, the characters in the painting come alive, break free from the canvases, and join the boy through an exhilarating jaunt around Manhattan. By Andrea Beaty and Illustrated by David Roberts. What is that horrible smell? So what does the girl do? By Jamilah Thompkins-Bigelow and illustrated by Ebony Glenn. So Harriet, dressed up in her penguin costume, goes on in adventure in search for hats. This clever book will have kids in stitches while also reminding parents to put down their phones and be present with their children. I absolutely love letting children ponder these pictures and tell their own stories. Shockingly few kids’ books feature characters of colour or with disabilities – it’s our responsibility to challenge that Today I’m grateful for Dolly planning a picnic f, I’m grateful for 3 beautiful children, who love, resources for raising anti-racist children, here’s a blog pos, 20 Books for your 2020 Summer Reading List, Easy Quiche Recipe: Sweet & Savory Zucchini. This holds especially true when it comes to kids learning about differences ― different races, different religions, different abilities and more. Wordpress Theme by TinselPop, I love posting this picture of the girls right aft, After a week of sharing so many things I’ve felt, Such a special chance to go visit the house we’r, Such a fun day picking out a tree at the Christmas, I’m so grateful for these beautiful people that, I’m grateful beyond words for modern medicine, w, Today I’m grateful for good food! Will he find a way to make his family happy while also staying true to himself? The Summer Nick Taught His Cats to Read by Curtis Manley and Katie Berube After all, he can’t talk or do any tricks. What books are you and your kids looking forward to reading in the year ahead? Why? Get Mommy Shorts updates sent directly to your inbox! Kiely’s family, of course, documenting her every move with their cameras. Curious Ada has a head full of questions, questions, and more questions! If you read my blog series of everyday female everyday superheroes, you met a few women who fulfilled their childhood dreams by believing in themselves and the power of education. Big words, small words, short words, sweet words. Children's books by BAME authors: best inclusive and diverse books for kids featuring Black, Asian and minority ethnic characters Bookseller Valentina Alexander of MyBookbasket.com shares some of her favourite children’s books that celebrate ethnic diversity. As one neighbor after another visits Omu to ask for a bowl of stew, Omu generously shares with all. The What We Do All Day website also has tons of great book lists, including Books about children with special needs and 21 picture books with diverse characters. This innovative book switches perspective mid-way through to show readers how Alfie the turtle didn’t run away at all. A young girl has no interest in sleeping in her own room (*ahem* nope, can’t relate to that one at all!) We’re entering this new decade with another epic list of diverse reads to share with you. According to their organization, “The Handbook of Research o… posts, and comments anonymously, in any medium. The voice, the word choice, the rhythm – it is all astonishingly perfect. We even collect books as souvenirs from our travels around the world. But when she goes to make her own dinner, she realizes there is none left for her! This is a lovely poem about finding your inner beauty, respecting yourself and treating others with kindness. Our picks of some of the top children’s books that represent (and celebrate!) He can think of nothing better than dressing up just like them, with his own tail and a magical headdress, so he attempts to do just that. A young boy visits his grandfather, only to find a giant chasm between them as they do not speak the same language. A 2018 study out of Cooperative Children's Book Center of Education (CCBC) at the University of Wisconsin-Madison found that the percentage of books depicting characters from diverse … 14 Things to Do With Kids in NYC When It’s Super Cold Outside, The Mommy Shorts Guide to the East Village, The Mommy Shorts Guide to the Meatpacking District, 11 Sweet Places for a Kid-Friendly Dessert Date in NYC, I Walk with Vanessa: A Story About a Simple Act of Kindness. Are you looking for books featuring characters of Indian ethnicity? Lauren Bercuson shares children’s literature reviews and other bookish fun on Instagram @happily.ever.elephants, on Facebook, on Twitter @KidLitLauren and on her blog Happily Ever Elephants. But what will Abuela think about the way Julian sees himself? Here’s a shortlist of some to check out. Whatever will she do? Did he run away? Keep and eye out for the second list in a few weeks! She wakes her brother, and when the two creep downstairs, they find their parents dancing and singing as they clean the kitchen: “Como te quiero! This a perfect book for classrooms, because it depicts a group of kids in a day at their school. And it can be even tougher to find reads for kids with varying identities or characters with special needs or abilities that do the same. Crown blew me away on the first read through, with its striking illustrations, its fabulous pacing, and its breathtakingly phenomenal voice. Children’s books with diverse characters need to be in every home. Equal Read researches the need for more literary diversity and works with schools and libraries to build their collections. In her debut, Cornwall created lovable, memorable characters in both Jabari and his compassionate father who together make a perfect pair. She gifts her dad a camping cot and attempts to convince him that he should sleep there instead of his actual bed where he belongs. When a little girl wakes up during the night, she hears mysterious noises coming from the kitchen. I am head over heels in love. There were so many great ones, which span a whole variety of topics, that we decided to split the list into Part 1 and Part 2. As long as public education has been alive in the United States, so too has the idea of a literary canon. We Need Diverse Books™ is a 501(c)(3) non-profit and a grassroots organization of children’s book lovers that advocates essential changes in the publishing industry to produce and promote literature that reflects and honors the lives of all young people. The children gravitated to books with familiar characters, but time and again, she saw white parents intervene — exchanging books that featured Black characters on the cover with different books. As I began my research to find more books to add to our collection, I learned that people of color are grossly underrepresented in children’s books. Here are 13 standout children's books with diverse characters. But on the night before her birthday, Nia discovers Alfie has gone missing. If you are looking to teach your kids about self worth and confidence, this lyrical book is the perfect tool! Diverse Easy Readers & Early Chapter Books What Do We Do All Day: 35 Multicultural Early Chapter Books PragmaticMom: Nina Soni, Former Best Friend and Other Diverse Chapter Books PragmaticMom: Chapter Book Series Starring Diverse Girl Characters PragmaticMom: 5 Great New Diversity Easy Readers PragmaticMom: 11 New Diversity Early Chapter Books PragmaticMom: Top 10 […] This magical story provides a stunning exploration of the power of creativity and perseverance. What books are you and your kids looking forward to reading in 2020? We’ve rounded up 25 children’s books that celebrate various differences in ways children can both understand and enjoy. Fruits: A Caribbean Counting Poem By Valerie Bloom, illustrated by David Axtell (Macmillan Children's Books) A rhythmic counting poem that describes all manner of delicious Caribbean fruits as a little girl tries to eat as many of t… By Lane Fredrickson and illustrated by Michael Robertson. A true gem! This is a quiet beauty about a young Muslim girl who plays dress-up in her mother’s colorful headscarf. Are you looking for a read that features a main character that looks like your kid? Then, search our website to find more titles of interest. Scholastic recently teamed up with We Need Diverse Books, an organization that advocates for diversity in children’s and young adult literature, to offer a reading list for libraries and classrooms. It is a gorgeous and oh-so-important mirror book for Muslim children and a wonderful window book for others, especially as it so elegantly challenges Islamaphobia. Most of the books …