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June, 09 2020 Books

Nine Diverse Books on Friendship

Diverse Books on Friendship!

Diversify your bookshelf with some inspiration from our favorite titles that promote themes of inclusivity, kindness and care.

The social accounts we love and follow for booklists and resources for educating our children are as follows:  (Donate, join their Patreon and follow)

Buy Black:  Support Black-owned indie bookstores

ABCs of Kindness!

🌈  ABCs of Kindness by Samantha Berger (Author), Ekaterina Trukhan  (Illustrator) Age Range: 2 – 5 years

Your kiddo will learn how they can make the world a kinder place while also covering the letters from A to Z!  We adore titles that reinforce actionable steps with the tangible lesson and tune of the alphabet.

“This book provides a different act of kindness for each letter of the alphabet. The text is presented in a logical sequence that will be easy for readers to follow. Throughout the book, children can be seen engaged in acts of play, friendship, and unity. . . The illustrations add to the text by providing delightful examples of each narrated act of kindness. The size of the book and easy-to-turn pages make it perfect for younger audiences. A great option for encouraging children to treat others with consideration and respect.” – School Library Journal

We’re Amazing, 1, 2, 3!

🌈 We’re Amazing, 1, 2, 3! by Leslie Kimmelman (Author), Marybeth Nelson (Illustrator)  Age Range: 3 – 7 years

This story stars Elmo, Abby, and their friend Julia, who has autism. Together, the three pals have a delightful playdate.

“I’m in tears. This is progress. Thank you sesame Street for doing what is right for the future of our children. Ultra grateful for the positive boldness to believe in these kids’ exceptional giftedness as much as the parents and educators who love and care for them.”I. Campbell

You Are Friendly

🌈  You Are Friendly by Todd Snow  (Author), Melodee Strong (Illustrator) Age Range: 5 – 6 years

WINNER! Teachers Choice Award –  Learn about important social skills like sharing, inviting others to join in the play, offering help and always treating others kindly.  You Are Friendly guides children to create healthy, positive relationships with others and invites them to see themselves and say “I can do that!”.

“Perfect for my preschoolers. Held their attention with bright illustrations and simple, but thoughtful text. Prompted wonderful discussions of how to be a friend!”H. Miller

Sam and Leo

🌈  Sam and Leo by Ruth Phang (Author), Susan L. Roth (Illustrator)  Age Range: 5 – 7 years

Learn about parts of the body and senses through the lens of friendship, as best friends Leo and Sam playfully describe what they each like best about the other.

“This delightful book highlights the joyful abandon of two young boys doing what little boys do — enjoying ice cream, playing on the beach and at the playground, and just being together. Their friendship is emphasized by the two-part format told first from Sam’s perspective and then from Leo’s. Susan Roth’s vibrant signature collages illuminate the wonder of discovering a first friendship.”Qinby Frank

Kiki & Jax: The Life-Changing Magic of Friendship

🌈  Kiki & Jax: The Life-Changing Magic of Friendship by Marie Kondo  (Author), Salina Yoon  (Author, Illustrator) Age Range: 3 – 7 years

The KonMari Method inspires a charming friendship story that is sure to spark joy!  Kiki and Jax are best friends, but they couldn’t be more different. The one thing they always agree on is how much fun they have together. But when things start to get in the way, can they make space for what has always sparked joy—each other?

“I am smitten. This sweet story is going to be such a helpful tool to so many parents who are searching for a way to teach their kids about how to care for what they own and to make space for what matters.”AHJ

Same, Same But Different

🌈 Same, Same But Different by Jenny Sue Kostecki-Shaw  (Author, Illustrator)  Age Range: 4 – 7 years

Through an inviting point-of-view and colorful, vivid illustrations, this story shows how two boys living oceans apart can be the best of friends.

“Young readers will close the book longing to have a friend from another place; for schools with global partnerships, this will be a go-to book for introducing these projects to classrooms.” ―Horn Book Magazine

Be Kind

🌈  Be Kind by Pat Zietlow Miller  (Author), Jen Hill  (Illustrator) Age Range: 3 – 6 years

When Tanisha spills grape juice all over her new dress, her classmate wants to make her feel better, wondering: What does it mean to be kind?

“These days, it seems more important than ever for books to show young people how to act with thoughtfulness, civility, and kindness.”The New York Times Book Review

Strictly No Elephants

🌈Strictly No Elephants by Lisa Mantchev  (Author), Taeeun Yoo  (Illustrator) Age Range: 4 – 7 years

The local Pet Club won’t admit a boy’s tiny pet elephant, so he finds a solution—one that involves all kinds of unusual animals.

“With a gentle message of inclusion and helping others, this title reaches beyond a mere friendship story.”—School Library Journal

Jake the Growling Dog: A Children’s Book about the Power of Kindness, Celebrating Diversity, and Friendship

🌈  Jake the Growling Dog: A Children’s Book about the Power of Kindness, Celebrating Diversity, and Friendship by Samantha Shannon  (Author), Parker Sinclair (Editor), Kerrie Joyce (Illustrator) Age Range: 5 – 7 years

Meet forest critters of all kinds while getting to know Jake. Jake loves to swim, hike, and play, but when he realizes he’s lonely a true friend comes to his aid. Soon others find friendship and understanding filling this tale with heart and hope.

“We love JAKE, the lovable yet misunderstood dog! My 7 and 5 year old children really enjoyed this book and it was the perfect story to read together as a family. We loved the rhymes and fun illustrations. The activities at the end (sending loving kindness to others) really gave my children the opportunity to practice gratitude and empathy and provoked engaging conversations of which we wouldn’t have had if we hadn’t read Jake, the Growling Dog. As a children’s yoga teacher, I am excited to read this story to my little yogis as well! Highly recommend!.”—Heather M.

These lists are far from exhaustive. FIND MORE DIVERSE AND ANTIRACIST BOOKS FOR CHILDREN HERE, HERE, and HERE. Tips for talking to your children about race found HERE.