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39 Children's Books Celebrating Diversity


Courtesy of the Children’s Book Bank

“When [children of color] don’t see images that look like them in books, they feel lost. They feel devalued and insignificant, like their story doesn’t matter,” Ariana Chavarria told OPB’s Think Out Loud.

Chavarria is on the board of the Children’s Book Bank and one of the people behind the campaign called A Story Like Mine. The goal is to try to make more culturally diverse children’s books available to kids from all backgrounds. She also pointed out the benefits for white children.

“For white children, it really teaches respect for all cultural groups. It serves as an example of how to interact with other children, children that are different than them,” Chavarria explained.

Think Out Loud asked listeners to post recommendations on the show’s Facebook page for children’s books that reflect diversity. Here are some of the books listeners recommend:

  • “The Snowy Day” by Ezra Jack Keats
  • “Rainbow Stew” by Cathryn Falwell
  • “The Nesting Quilt” by Cathryn Falwell
  • “David’s Drawings” by Cathryn Falwell
  • “Island of the Blue Dolphins” by Scott O’Dell
  • “The Rain Stomper” by Boswell Addie and Eric Velasquez
  • “PeeChee The Perfect Peach” by Stephen Schwartz
  • “More, More, More Said The Baby” by Vera B. Williams
  • “Lola At The Library” by Anna McQuinn
  • “Not Norman” by Kelly Bennett
  • “The Last Dragon” by Silvana de Mari 
  • “Bud Not Buddy” by Christopher Paul Curtis
  • “Charlie Parker Played Be Bop” by Christopher Raschka
  • “The Good Luck Cat” by Joy Harjo and Paul Lee
  • “Metal Man” by Aaron Reynolds
  • “Squeak, Rumble, Whomp! Whomp! Whomp!” by Wynton Marsalis and Paul Rogers
  • “Stand Tall Molly Lou Melon” by Patty Lovell and David Catrow
  • “A Chair For My Mother” by Vera B. Williams
  • “Roll of Thunder Hear My Cry” by Mildred D. Taylor
  • “More Stories Julian Tells” by Ann Cameron and Ann Strugnell
  • We Are All Alike, We Are All Different” by Cheltenham Elementary Kindergartners and Laura Dwight
  • “Mama Do You Love Me?” By Barbara Joosse
  • “What Mary Jo Shared” by Janice May Udry and Elizabeth Sayles
  • “The Paperboy” by Dav Pilkey
  • “The Hello, Goodbye Window” by Norton Juster
  • Mice & Beans” by Pam Munoz Ryan
  • Tortillas para mi Mamà” by Lynn Reiser and Corazones Valientes
  • “My Little Car/Mi Carrito” by Gary Soto
  • “The Sissy Duckling” by Harvey Fierstein
  • Daddy’s Roommate” by Michael Willhoite
  • “Cherries and Cherry Pits” by Vera Williams
  • “The Grey Lady and the Strawberry Snatcher” by Molly Bang
  • “Round is a Mooncake” by Roseanne Thong
  • “Ten, Nine, Eight” by Molly Bang
  • Dim Sum for Everyone” by Grace Lin
  • Chicken Sunday” by Patricia Polacco
  • “Leo A Ghost Story” by Mac Barnett and Christian Robinson
  • “Last Stop on Market Street” by Matt De La Peña and Christian Robinson
  • “The Smallest Girl in the Smallest Grade” by Justin Roberts and Christian Robinson
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