Diversity is an important topic to talk about in early childhood. Children are surrounded by people who are different from themselves in many ways. From culture to skin color to family makeup, children notice the differences between themselves and their peers; and they are often curious about the things that make us unique from one and other.
Unfortunately, it is not always easy to find a way to introduce these topics to children. Children’s storybooks can spark conversations about diversity by creating opportunities to talk to children about the importance of accepting themselves and their peers and appreciating similarities and differences.
Books for Infants & Toddlers
This story is a simple read with vibrant photography, featuring images of infants from around the world dressed in traditional clothing. Infants and toddlers enjoy looking at faces, and will be engaged with the images of children in the book. Global Babies is available for purchase as a board book, so it is appropriate for even the youngest readers to explore independently.
This book celebrates diversity from a different perspective, noting the things that babies all over have in common. The book explores caregiving routines and a typical day in the life of an infant. The book’s simple illustrations and rhymes make it enjoyable and engaging for infants and toddlers. This book is also available for purchase as a board book.
This sweet and simple book tells the story of a friendship between a pig and a rabbit. Through their relationship, they learn to celebrate and appreciate the differences that make them unique from each other.
Books for Preschoolers
When a young girl paints a picture of herself, she chooses brown for her skin color and finds herself noticing the many different shades of skin in her neighborhood. This book celebrates our differences and similarities, by exploring diversity from the eyes of a child. The vibrant colors and textures in this story will be enjoyable and engaging for children in preschool and pre-k.
When Agatha begins kindergarten, she feels that she does not fit in because of how she looks. She is embarrassed by her physical differences and is nervous to talk with the other children at school. Until her teacher asks everyone what makes them special, the other children share how Agatha’s differences make her special and unique! This story celebrates individuality and the challenges that can sometimes come along with feeling different than our peers.
This story of a young Korean girl who moves to a new neighborhood, explores how cultural differences can sometimes make us feel like outsiders. The girl is worried that no one will be able to pronounce her name. She decides that she will pick a new American name for her peers to call her by, until one of her classmates finds out her real name, and its special meaning. The children are excited to learn more about their new classmate and her unique name in this sweet story that celebrates cultural differences from the perspective of a young child.