Start the Conversation-Picture Books to Teach Our Children About Racism-Part of our mission here at Empowering Kids with Character is to help make the world a better place through the work we do. We wanted to provide resources for families to help during this time where hate seems to be showing up where LOVE should. #Racism #PictureBooks #BooksToRead #BooksWorthReading #BooksToTeach

Part of our mission here at Empowering Kids with Character is to help make the world a better place through the work we do. We wanted to provide resources for families to help during this time where hate seems to be showing up where LOVE should. I paused on sending an email because I didn’t know the right words to say and then I read this from a friend of mine which reminded me that in this moment, staying silent is not okay. Taking action is where we will see change.

“Listening creates empathy. Which leads to compassion. And because of my empathy and compassion, I take action.” ~Alexa Bigwarfe

As a leader, I am committed to doing my part in educating myself (after the last week, I acknowledge there is still so much to learn). It is also my role and responsibility to teach my children about racism. Here are two ways you can start today.

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Read Books That….

-Celebrate Racial Diversity
One Family by George Shannon
Same, Same but Different by Jenny Sue Kostecki-Shaw
Whoever You Are by Mem Fox
All Are Welcome by Alexandra Penfold
The Skin You Live In by Michael Tyler
We All Sing With the Same Voice by J. Philip Miller
We’re Different, We’re the Same by Bobbi Kates
Chocolate Milk, Por Favor by Maria Dismondy

-Explain Racism to Children
Let’s Talk About Race by Julius Lester
Big Papa and the Time Machine by Daniel Bernstrom
Separate is Never Equal by Duncan Tonatiuh
Something Happened in Our Town by Marianne Celano PhD
Let the Children March by Monica Clark-Robinson
Woke Baby by Mahogany L. Browne
If You’re Going to March by Martha Freeman
Someday is Now by Olugbemisola Rhuday-Perkovich
We Rise, We Resist, We Raise Our Voices by Wade Hudson
A is for Activist by Innosanto Nagara

-Teach about Being Treated Unfairly for Differences
My Traveling Eye by Jenny Sue-Kostecki Shaw
You, Me and Empathy by Jayneen Sanders
Amazing Grace by Mary Hoffman
The Name Jar by Yangsook Choi
Yoko by Rosemary Wells
Dare by Barry McDonagh

-Books by Black Authors, Illustrators and about Black Characters
I Am Enough by Grace Byers
My Hair by Hannah Lee
Hair Love by Matthew A. Cherry (Watch the movie short here)
Little Leaders: Bold Women in Black History by Vashti Harrison
Sulwe by Lupita Nyong, illustrated by Vashti Harrison
Tar Beach by Faith Ringgold
A Chair for My Mother by Vera B Williams

-Biographies About People of Color
Schomburg: The Man Who Built a Library by Carole Boston Weatherford
A Voice Named Aretha by Katheryn Russell-Brown
The Power of Her Pen by Lesa Cline-Ransome
The Oldest Student by Rita Lorraine Hubbard
Mae Among the Stars by Roda Ahmed
Before She was Harriet by Lesa Cline-Ransome
Maybe Something Beautiful by F. Isabel Campoy and Theresa Howell
Harlem’s Little Blackbird by Renee Watson
Salt in His Shoes by Deloris Jordan
Molly, by Golly by Dianne Ochiltree
Poet: The Remarkable Story of George Moses Horton by Don Tate
It Jes’ Happened: When Bill Traylor Started to Draw by Don Tate

Go Beyond the Book

-There are age appropriate ways to have discussions around topics that seem hard to approach because of the way they show up in the real world. CNN did a great job with a Sesame Street Town Hall for kids on the Pandemic. Tomorrow they are hosting a 60-minute special “Coming Together: Standing Up to Racism. A CNN/Sesame Street Town Hall for Kids and Families”  Saturday, June 6, at 10 a.m. ET.

How to watch: The town hall will air on CNN, CNN International and CNN en Español. It will stream live on CNN.com’s homepage and across mobile devices via CNN’s apps, without requiring a cable log-in.

-Ask yourself how your family will participate in taking action to help others. Consider participating in service work and giving back to organizations that are helping bring peace to our planet. 

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