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Best books for inclusion and diversity

Best books for inclusion and diversity
Creating an environment that promotes inclusivity and diversity at home and in the classroom is incredibly important, but how can we do this? A great place to start is with one of the oldest and most powerful tools for opening minds there is – books!
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More books with minority representation are being published every year, which helps to provide the world with a rounded viewpoint and emphasises the variety of people within our communities. 

Here, we highlight just some of these amazing books full of fun, imaginative adventures and inspiring characters that you can introduce to your children.

There’s something for everyone, and that’s the point. 

We are the Rainbow! The Colours of Pride by Claire Winslow

£9.05, Sunbird Books

Recommended age: 3-6 years

Most of us our familiar with the LGBTQ rainbow flag but what do the colours actually stand for? Learn about their significance with this wonderfully illustrated book for younger readers. Accessible and inviting, the rounded, colourful pages bring the flag to life and make this a thoroughly enjoyable read.  

See What I Can Do: An Introduction to Differences by Jon Roberts

£7.99, Graffeg

Recommended age: 5-7 years

This is a wonderful collection of short stories shared by real children. Each story highlights the beauty in our differences but also the strength of our similarities. Many of the characters have physical or neurological conditions, some of which are visible and some are not but all of them contribute to making that individual who they are. This is a great book for opening up a conversation with your child about differences and promoting a kind and curious discussion. A large percentage of the proceeds will be donated to charity.

Call Me Lion by Camilla Chester

£7.99, Firefly Press

Recommended age: 9+ years

Call Me Lion is a heart-warming tale of friendship between Leo, who has selective mutisim, and Richa, who is embarrassed that she can’t read or write. They both love expressing themselves through dance and they have an instant connection. Their friendship faces a few rough bumps along the way but in the end, they help each other grow, face fears and feel accepted.  

Wanda by Sihle Nontshokweni and Mathabo Tlali

£14.26, Crocodile Books

Recommended age: 4-8 years

A beautiful story about self-image, culture and confidence. Wanda is a young South African girl who struggles with how her classmates treat her because of her hair. Her mother tells her that her hair is beautiful but her schoolteacher makes her tie it up ‘neat and clean’. Discover how Wanda builds her confidence with the help of her supportive family.

Through the Eyes of Me by Jon Roberts

£5.07, Graffeg

Recommended age: 4-7 years

Through the Eyes of Me describes Kya’s likes and dislikes and why you might find her stacking and arranging toys into piles! Jon Roberts wrote this book for his autistic daughter who has autism. Through the eyes of Kya, the reader can learn more about autism and start to appreciate the thoughts and feelings of someone with the condition. It’s a wonderfully warm, heartfelt children’s book and the use of imagery and simple language make it a pleasure to read with your children.

Major and Mynah by Karen Owen, illustrated by Louise Forshaw

£5.99, Firefly

Recommended age: 7-9 years

Join the SPUD team – the Super Perceptive Undercover Detectives ­– with Callie and her best friend Grace. They need to solve the mystery of the missing items, but Callie also needs to get used to her new hearing aids that make everything so much louder! Callie soon discovers that the hearing aids also give her the special ability to communicate with Bo the bird. This story is an action-packed fun adventure with a positive message and a little insight into the world of those who have limited hearing.  

And Tango Makes Three by Justin Richardson and Peter Parnell

£6.55, Simon & Schuster Children's UK

Recommended age: 4-8 years

A charming but powerful story about two male penguins at the zoo who love each other and want to hatch an egg together. This is a great children’s book for introducing the concept of adoption and the reality that families come in all different shapes and sizes – all you need is love!

The Proudest Blue by Ibtihaj Muhammad

£6.55, Walker Books

Recommended age: 4-8 years

It’s the first day of school and it’s Asiya’s first day wearing her beautiful blue hijab – a headscarf worn by Muslim women. Unfortunately, some of the children are cruel and it’s a challenging day for Asiya, but she finds the strength to overcome. This story has a great message about dealing with intolerance and having pride in who you are.

 

Julian is a Mermaid by Jessica Love

£4.58, Walker Books

Recommended age: 4-9 years

Julian's imagination goes wild after he sees three fabulously dressed women on the subway. He can’t wait to try looking fabulous and sparkly just like a mermaid. But what will his grandmother say about it? This book is beautifully illustrated and pulls you into Julian’s story and the world around him. It's a way to open up the subject of gender norms and challenging expectations and a delightful read from start to finish.  

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