Diverse and multicultural books are a huge focus here at The Logonauts. This page provides links to previously published posts about such books and resources, organized by topics. (Click on Where Are We Reading? for a map-based list of books read aloud in my third grade classroom, including many multicultural books.)
- We Were There, Too! Young People in US History - book review about this incredibly useful collection of biographies about children throughout American history
- Freedom Song (a study of plot) - this book tells the story of Henry "Box" Brown who mailed himself from slavery in the south to freedom in PA
- Juneteenth for Mazie - a young girl learns the history and meaning behind the holiday of Juneteenth
- Picture Book Text Set on Japanese Internment - introduce students to this dark chapter in American history with this series of picture books at their level. See also New Book Alert: Dash, a review of a historical fiction novel set in an Internment camp.
- New Shoes: new book alert and analysis - story of a young girl confronting the racism of Jim Crow-era America
- Picture Book Biographies illustrated by Sean Qualls - this collection of picture book biographies features many famous African-Americans including poets, musicians, and more
US History - Immigration
- Teaching about US History: nonfiction resources - collection of nonfiction books and resources for teaching children about the history of US immigration
- Ellis Island for Kids: historical fiction and memoirs about US immigration - great resources for teaching children about Ellis Island
- Look What Came From series - these books focus on an individual country or continent and share the unique inventions and cultural contributions of this place through history
- Stories about Chinese Inventions - two great book series that feature possible explanations for inventions from ancient China
- Teaching about the Geography of Food - this series of nonfiction books is ideal for teaching students about the history and geography of food.
- Teaching Geography with Poetry - this poetry book is my go-to resource at the beginning of the year for introducing students to several important geography concepts, including latitude and longitude.
- Worldwide Cinderella Stories - part 1: Asia, Africa, and Europe - an introduction to more than 20 different picture book versions of Cinderella stories from these three continents, including some of the oldest recorded Cinderella stories.
- Worldwide Cinderella Stories - part 2: the Americas - this collection includes several Native American Cinderella stories as well as more recent versions that evolved in the Americas
- Teaching Cinderella Stories from around the World - suggestions about how to use Cinderella stories from around the world in your classroom
- "Foolish" Wise Men - folktales from the Middle East and India - this collection of stories features the foolish wise man who uses his supposedly simple nature to teach lessons to the rich and powerful.
- Trickster Tales from Around the World by Gerald McDermott - this collection of trickster tales features a wide-range of tricksters from many countries and cultures that will keep your child in stitches.
- Anansi the Trickster, part 1: stories by Eric Kimmel and part 2: stories by other authors - Anansi is a popular trickster from West Africa and the Ashanti people, and these two posts highlight a variety of picture books featuring him and his tricky antics. In a few, Anansi even finds himself tricked!
- A Chinese Twist on Favorite Tales - these fairy tale stories hark back to well-known tales but add a Chinese or Chinese-American setting and characters
- Meet Juan Bobo - Juan Bobo is a popular folk hero from Puerto Rico
- Read around the World: Tales Told in Tents - this anthology features a variety of folktales, stories, and poems from the countries of Central Asia
- Traditional Tales illustrated by Meilo So - these traditional tales from Asia and Europe are illustrated with the free and flowing style of Meilo So
Modern People and Cultures
Cultures in General
- Around the World in a Single Book - part 1: children - introduce your students to other children from around the world in this series of picture books.
- Around the World in a Single Book - part 2: cultures - these books focus on cultures around the world in general, including books about houses and food around the world.
- Around the World in a Single Book - part 3: languages and schools - this conclusion to the series focuses on books about languages and schools around the world.
Books Set in Asia
- King for a Day - this charming picture book is set in Lahore, Pakistan and introduces readers to the kite festival and fighting of the Basant festival.
- Summoning the Phoenix: Review - this collection of poetry and nonfiction information features unique Chinese musical instruments. The review includes videos and suggestions for making your own instruments.
- Twenty-Two Cents: Review - introduce your child to the world of microfinance and the man behind Grameen Bank. This review also includes recommended books to pair with this one to encourage kids to think about how to make a difference and improve the lives of others.
- Picture Books from India - collection of great picture books from India, including traditional tales, modern stories, and nonfiction
- Mystery of the Golden Temple - this middle grade adventure novel set in Thailand features an African-American girl and her new Thai friend
Books Set in Africa
- Emmanuel's Dream: a study of character - this book is based on the true story of a young boy named Emmanuel who is born in Ghana with only one good leg. Emmanuel is a boy who does not let his disability define himself or his character, and this book highlights his constant perseverance and determination.
- Deep in the Sahara - is an immersive picture book told in second person, placing you, the reader, as young Lalla, a Muslim girl living in Mauritania in west Africa. During the course of the book, Lalla explores why she wants to wear the malafa like her mother and relatives.
- The Red Bicycle - a powerful story of the life of one red bicycle and its multiple reincarnations through donation
Holidays and Religion
- 5 Positive Picture Books for Ramadan - book review of five realistic fiction picture books about the Muslim holiday of Ramadan
- More Great Picture Books about Ramadan and Muslim Culture - book review of another five great realistic fiction picture books centered around Ramadan
- The Runaway Wok - Chinese New Year - this entertaining book plays off the Gingerbread Man story with its Chinese New Year-inspired tale
- Stories from the Chinese Zodiac - this collection of stories offers different traditions to explain the animals of the Chinese Zodiac
Languages and Poetry
- Celebrating Bilingualism with Poetry - why write poems in only one language? Use this tri-lingual book to encourage your students to write and express themselves in all their languages.
- Swahili Alphabet and Counting Books - a round up of several different Swahili language books that focus on counting and the alphabet in addition to introducing other Swahili words.
- Amazing Faces: amazing poems - this collection of poems featuring diverse children and adults from the US is a great addition to any celebration of multiculturalism.
- Indigenous Food Haiku - this book of haiku inspired by the indigenous plants of the Americas is a great way to talk to kids about where food comes from and to celebrate the contributions of Native Americans and other indigenous peoples.
- Celebrating Seasons and the Poetry of Francisco X. Alarcón - collection of incredible bilingual poems in Spanish and English, each book focused around a different season of the year
- Picture Books that Deal with Modern Wars - a review of several picture books that introduce students to modern wars and their impact, either specifically or more indirectly.
- The Power of Girls and Schools: text set - this collection of picture books focuses on the plight of girls and education through history and around the world, focusing on inspiring stories of girls who fought to get an education.
- Biographies about People and Trees - these books share the stories of inspiring individuals who worked hard to preserve, plant, and protect trees and their environment.
- Books about Modern Immigration and Immigrants - collection of picture books about modern US immigration and recent immigrants
- New Book Alert: I'm New Here - a new book about new immigrants to the US, told from their three unique points-of-view