5 Kids’ Books that Teach Diversity and Inclusion

Showing your child the importance of kitchen safety while making a batch of cookies? Check. Teaching sharing by splitting a cookie between siblings? Check.

Instilling lessons about the importance of diversity and inclusion? This one will likely need some better help than just the cookie jar. 

When it comes to teaching diversity and inclusion, books are one of the most advanced tools in your parenting toolbox. After all, books are windows into other worlds, eras, and experiences that can expand your child’s understanding of themselves and others.

If you’re looking for the right books to instill lessons of love, compassion, and respect for all human beings, we’ve got you covered. We’re committed to sharing stories from all storytellers and engaging young readers in empathy with each new page. Open your child’s worldview with these five enthralling children’s books that teach diversity and inclusion. 

(But go ahead and bring those cookies to storytime!)

Amelia to Zora: Twenty-Six Women Who Changed the World

Travel through history (and the alphabet!) with the beautifully-illustrated Amelia to Zora.

Cynthia Chin-Lee tells stories of 26 women from all over the world, starting with Amelia Earhart and ending with Zora Neale Hurston. Chin-Lee highlights famous figures you’ll find in typical textbooks as well as astounding women whose names you’ll wish you had known sooner. Her one-page biographies are paired with real quotes from the figures along with tales of bravery and innovation that are nothing short of inspiring. 

The more your child reads, the more likely they are to envision their future selves and peers on the pages. 

Your child will love this book if they love…

  • History and historical figures
  • Exploring new things and learning about inventions
  • Powerful women and their adventures

Malala’s Magic Pencil

Harold and the Magic Purple Crayon meets awe-spiring bravery and entrancing art in this stunning book by Nobel Peace Prize-winner (and Literati Luminary!) Malala Yousafzai. 

Malala’s first foray into children’s literature tells the true story of her childhood wish as a young girl in Pakistan. In the story, Malala wishes for a magic pencil that can spread happiness, clean her city, and even give her an extra hour of sleep (you or your little snoozer can probably relate!). But she realizes there are more important things to bring into the world—kindness, fearlessness, and resilience. 

This book delivers Malala’s incredible life story with a soft touch for a younger audience. Yousafzai’s passion for education and human rights shine through the text, reaching out to the next generation with powerful insights about the wider world.

Your child will love this book if they love…

  • Inspirational stories about young girls
  • Writing and a touch of magical creativity 
  • Real-life superheroes

The Big Umbrella

To a kid, rainy days are special. Your little one might love puddle-stomping in the rain with friends, cuddling up with warm blankets and a good story, or even discovering how fast a sled can go on mud-slicked hills.

But after reading this book, rainy days will remind them of so much more than the glory of mud puddles and listening to rain pattering on the roof.

The Big Umbrella is a subtly-told story about tolerance, inclusion, and caring for others, no matter what shape or size they are. Even if the weather worsens and other people arrive, there’s always room for more under the umbrella. The book creates a warm, dry haven in a storm. When society is often eager to exclude those who are different, Bates teaches readers to embrace them. 

So the next time storm clouds gather, get cozy with some blankets and snuggle up with this perfect story your child will remember (whatever the weather). 

Your child will love this book if they love…

  • Rainy days
  • Topics on family and belonging
  • Captivating, creative illustrations

Mae Among the Stars

It’s hard to believe that all astronauts started as excited little kids with their eyes on the night sky. If your little one stays up way past bedtime to imagine zooming through the stars, tell them to come to bed for this amazing true story.

Little Mae Jemison dreams of floating among the stars, dancing and discovering. Heartfelt illustrations make this little girl’s journey a joy to follow—from her dreams as a child to her hard work, intelligence, and determination as a young adult when she makes her way into NASA.

Roda Ahmed showcases that dreams do come true with hard work. Sometimes, they even take you past the atmosphere. 

Your child will love this book if they love…

  • Outer space and astronauts
  • Science and the vastness of space
  • Having big dreams

The Indian in the Cupboard

Parents who grew up in the ’90s and early 2000s may remember this powerful book and love revisiting the story with their middle-grade reader (or as a read-aloud adventure with younger bibliophiles!). 

A young English boy named Omri puts a plastic toy Indian in his medicine cabinet. When he turns the key and opens it again, he has unwittingly brought the figurine to life—a real warrior named Little Bear with his own identity and way of life.

This entertaining fantasy story engages younger readers to think about stereotypes, learn about history and cultural diversity, and care about the welfare of others. Now that’s magical!

Your child will love this book if they love…

  • Magical stories that take place in the real world
  • Learning about different cultures
  • Unlikely friendships

The All-Inclusive Literati Kids Book Subscription

When your child opens a book, they encounter new people, new places, and new ways of life. By the end, they’ve returned home again with new friends and new perspectives. Offer your child a whole new world of adventures with Literati’s book clubs for kids.

Literati offers a carefully chosen kids’ book subscription that sends five reading gems your way every month. You only keep the books your child falls in love with.

And what’s even better than an engaging read? One that teaches the young minds of our world that we’re all in this together. 

On Key

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