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Reading has always helped me to better understand and process the world around me. As a homeschooling mom, I seek meaningful literature for my children in an effort to educate and inspire them. One such way is by ensuring there are books on our bookshelf that my son can identify with. Because he is of mixed-race, I began my home library with a collection of books geared toward biracial kids.
Offering our biracial kids a true sense of who they are, where they come from and an understanding of their place in the world will help them positively contribute to it. It forges the way toward self-confidence, strength and compassion to become the change the world so desperately needs right now.
My son is now 6 years old and has been noticing that my skin color is quite different from his and dads. Just funny observations now and then.
“Mommy is hot dog color and I am ham color!”
I would have much preferred he compare us to yummy beverages like coffee with cream or hot cocoa rather than processed meats, but hey, what can you do?
Books Biracial Kids Need to Learn About Mixed-Race Identity
Recently I started thinking of ways I could broach the subject of his mixed-race in a healthy and positive way while keeping it as natural and straightforward as possible. I gravitated toward these books for biracial kids that I thought would be a fun and natural way to show my son people that looked like us!
- I originally found the book Black is Brown is Tan at the library and loved it so much that I needed to have it in our home library. The illustrations depict our family perfectly and it discusses the differences between mom and dads skin color and how the biracial child is a beautiful blend of both.
- The Case for Loving: The Fight for Interracial Marriage gently introduces the fight for interracial marriage to children in an age-appropriate way. While it doesn’t fully explain how the court system works, it responsibly uses illustrations as a jumping-off point for parents to fill in the blanks on the Supreme Court if needed and respectfully illustrates the ‘darker’ aspects of the story through dramatic (not scary) images.
- It doesn’t get any more classic than Sesame Street. In the book We’re Different, We’re The Same recognizing our similarities despite our differences is the goal. This book makes a great baby shower gift. Who better to introduce tolerance and acceptance than Elmo and Friends!
- I am Mixed is a sweet book by Garcelle Beauvais & Sebastian Jones I’ve long battled what to call myself. Years of ticking off the “other” box and trying to fit “who I am” into one neat little box left me sad and confused as a child and young adult. Representation really and truly, does matter.
We all want to raise our children to be well-adjusted, compassionate and emotionally intelligent. It’s important to start our kids on the right path toward love and acceptance of all people. If picture books can help do that, we need to fill our bookshelves with quality children’s literature. We need to be more selective about what we let them read.
Have you found any books for biracial kids that you absolutely love? Share in the comments below, I’m always looking for new options for our bookshelves!