As part of that session, I am putting together various text sets of picture books that teachers and parents can use to help introduce children to diverse characters and children around the world. The complete handouts from the talk will be available here.
This is the first in a series of posts that provides more details about each of the featured text sets. These are books that celebrate diversity of families and family structures, as well as books that feature diverse and/or multicultural families. Upcoming text sets include books to reinforce the idea that Africa is not a country and books that explore alternative points of view on exploration and colonization.
Books that Celebrate Diversity of/within Families
The Case for Loving: the fight for interracial marriage (2015) by Selina Alko and illustrated by Sean Qualls and Selina Alko. This book represents a collaboration between the husband-and-wife team of Selina Alko and Sean Qualls. The story of Richard Loving and Mildred Jeter and their fight for interracial marriage is presented very much from today's point-of-view but also offers children background about how this fight came to be. The author's note draws the natural connection between the history of this fight and the current battle for recognition of same sex marriages and also shares some of the authors' backstory as an interracial couple.
Heather Has Two Mommies (2015 ed.) by Lesléa Newman and illustrated by Laura Cornell. Heather's favorite number is two, and the book uses her love of 2s to structure a story about her life and first day of school. This book is a great one for helping all students understand and embrace the broad range of what the term "family" truly means, and this new updated illustrations make the story more accessible to today's readers.
Children Just Like Me series (1995) by Barnabas and Anabel Kindersley. Children Just Like Me
The Kindersleys have since branched out and created a whole series of books. Children Just Like Me: Celebrations! features holidays and celebrations around the world, organized seasonally. Again, information about each holiday is shared through the eyes of an individual child. Children Just Like Me: Our Favorite Stories is a collection of folktales from around the world. There are also continent specific versions of the books available, including Children of Europe, Children of Africa and Neighboring Countries, and Children of the Americas.
Do you have a favorite book that features a diversity of families? Please share in the comments below! For more text sets on diverse topics, please click here.