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Children's Books to Help with Conversations about Race and Racism

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Hands Up! by Breanna J. McDaniel
E MCDANIEL
A young girl lifts her hands up in a series of everyday moments before finally raising her hands in resistance at a protest march.
Black is a Rainbow Color by Angela Joy
E JOY
A child reflects on the meaning of being Black in this anthem about a people, a culture, a history, and a legacy that lives on.
When We Were Alone by David Alexander Robertson
E ROBERTSON
When a young girl helps tend to her grandmother's garden, she begins to notice things that make her curious. Why does her grandmother have long, braided hair and beautifully colored clothing? Why does she speak another language and spend so much time with her family? As she asks her grandmother about these things, she is told about life in a residential school a long time ago, where all of these things were taken away.
Little Dreamers: Visionary Women Around the World by Vashti Harrison
BIOGRAPHY JNF HAR
Brief, illustrated biographies of women creators around the world.
Skin Again by Bell Hooks
E HOOKS
Celebrating all that makes us unique and different, Skin Again offers new ways to talk about race and identity.
I Walk with Vanessa by Kerascoët
COPING BULLYING E KERASCOËT
An elementary school girl witnesses the bullying of another girl, but she is not sure how to help.
Intersection Allies: We Make Room for All by Chelsea Johnson, LaToya Council, and Carolyn Choi
E JOHNSON
A handy book about intersectionality that depicts the nuances of identity and embraces difference as a source of community.
A is for Activist by Innosanto Nagara
E NAGARA
A book written and illustrated for the next generation of progressives --families who want their kids to grow up in a space that is unapologetic about activism, environmental justice, civil rights, LGBTQ rights, and everything else that activists believe in and fight for.
The Skin You Live In by Michael Tyler
E TYLER
This delightful picturebook offers a wonderful venue through which parents and teachers can discuss important social concepts with their children.
Beautiful by Stacy McAnulty
E MCANULTY
Spirited girls offer a quirky take on traditional advice of how beautiful girls should behave, showing how their own individuality and talent make them beautiful.
The King of Kindergarten by Derrick Barnes
COPING SCHOOL E BARNES
Instilled with confidence by his parents, a young boy has a great first day of kindergarten.
Who we Are by Robie Harris
LIFE JNF HAR
Teaches children about the many ways that people are the same as one another, as well as the many ways that they are different, and why it is important to treat people right, regardless of whether they are different or not.
The Breaking News by Sarah Lynne Reul
COPING FEELINGS E REUL
When a girl's parents and community are overwhelmed by sudden bad news, she tries to imagine how to help.
Not my Idea: a Book about Whiteness by Anastasia HIgginbotham
LIFE JNF HIG
A white child sees a TV news report of a white police officer shooting and killing a black man. "In our family, we don't see color," his mother says, but he sees the colors plain enough. An afternoon in the library's history stacks uncover the truth of white supremacy in America. Racism was not his idea and he refuses to defend it.
What's the Difference?: Being Different is Amazing by Doyin Richards
LIFE JNF RIC
Photographs and simple text celebrate friendship, diversity, and acceptance.
All are Welcome by Alexandra Penfold
E PENFOLD
Illustrations and simple, rhyming text introduce a school where diversity is celebrated and songs, stories, and talents are shared.
All of Us by Carin Berger
E BERGER
Simple text and collage illustrations remind the reader that we are stronger together than alone.
We Are the Change illustrated by Selina Alko
LIFE JNF WE
Sixteen award-winning children's book artists illustrate the civil rights quotations that inspire them in this stirring and beautiful book.
The Proudest Blue: a Story of Hijab and Family by Ibtihaj Muhammad with S. K. Ali
E MUHAMMAD
Faizah relates how she feels on the first day her sister, sixth-grader Asiya, wears a hijab to school.
Amy Wu and the Perfect Bao by Kat Zhang
E ZHANG
Amy is determined to make a perfect dumpling like her parents and grandmother do, but hers are always too empty, too full, or not pinched together properly.