Children are never too young to start learning about about race. Now more than ever, it’s time for a change. And that change can start at home.
Not only is representation important – for kids to see themselves and their experiences in the books they read, the movies they watch, the toys they play with, etc. But it’s also important for children to read about people who are different from them.
Reading books featuring Black characters and experiences provide a great way to start a conversation about race with your children. Books provide a great way to start a conversation about race and how to be anti-racist.
12 Books that help Raise Anti-Racist Children
All Are Welcome: Discover a school where—no matter what—young children have a place, have a space, and are loved and appreciated.
Hair Love: Tender and empowering, Hair Love is an ode to loving your natural hair — and a celebration of daddies and daughters everywhere.
Let’s Talk About Race: In this acclaimed book, the author of the Newbery Honor Book To Be a Slave shares his own story as he explores what makes each of us special. A strong choice for sharing at home or in the classroom.
I Am Enough: This gorgeous, lyrical ode to loving who you are, respecting others, and being kind to one another comes from Empire actor and activist Grace Byers and talented newcomer artist Keturah A. Bobo. We are all here for a purpose. We are more than enough. We just need to believe it.
The Day You Begin: Jacqueline Woodson’s lyrical text and Rafael López’s dazzling art reminds us that we all feel like outsiders sometimes-and how brave it is that we go forth anyway. And that sometimes, when we reach out and begin to share our stories, others will be happy to meet us halfway.
That is My Dream: Follow one African-American boy through the course of his day as the harsh reality of segregation and racial prejudice comes into vivid focus. But the boy dreams of a different life—one full of freedom, hope, and wild possibility, where he can fling his arms wide in the face of the sun.
Malcolm Little: Malcolm X grew to be one of America’s most influential figures. But first, he was a boy named Malcolm Little. Written by his daughter, this inspiring picture book biography celebrates a vision of freedom and justice.
Let It shine: The lives these women led are part of an incredible story about courage in the face of oppression; about the challenges and triumphs of the battle for civil rights; and about speaking out for what you believe in–even when it feels like no one is listening.
Each Kindness: This unforgettable book is written and illustrated by the award-winning team that created The Other Side and the Caldecott Honor winner Coming On Home Soon. With its powerful anti-bullying message and striking art, it will resonate with readers long after they’ve put it down.
The King of Kindergarten: A confident little boy takes pride in his first day of kindergarten, by the Newbery Honor-winning author of Crown.
Last Stop on Market Street: Every Sunday after church, CJ and his grandma ride the bus across town. But today, CJ wonders why they don’t own a car like his friend Colby. Why doesn’t he have an iPod like the boys on the bus? How come they always have to get off in the dirty part of town? Each question is met with an encouraging answer from grandma, who helps him see the beauty—and fun—in their routine and the world around them.
We’re Different, We’re the Same (Sesame Street): Elmo and his Sesame Street friends help teach toddlers and the adults in their lives that everyone is the same on the inside, and it’s our differences that make this wonderful world, which is home to us all, an interesting—and special—place. This enduring, colorful, and charmingly illustrated book offers an easy, enjoyable way to learn about differences—and what truly matters. We’re Different, We’re the Same is an engaging read for toddlers and adults alike that reinforces how we all have the same needs, desires, and feelings.