Updated: Apr 5
Featured Illustration: I Got the Rhythm by Connie Schofield-Morrison and Illustrated by Frank Morrison.
TIP #1: AUDIT YOUR BOOKSHELF
Dr. Rudine Simms Bishop first described children's books as "mirrors, windows and sliding glass doors." Mirrors are books that affirm the identity and experiences of the reader. They give a child or teen the gift of knowing "this book is about me." Window books provide a view into the experiences of others helping readers to build empathy and understanding. Lastly, all books have the potential to be sliding glass doors, a gateway to a new point of view, vision of the future, or an adventure miles away from home. When you go to find your next book, you can build a collection that highlights the full range of experiences and sociocultural identities.
EDUCATE YOURSELF RESOURCE
Diversebookfinder.org is an online resource dedicated to featuring picture books with Black and Indigenous People and People of Color (BIPOC) in a way that allows readers to consider books in relation to each other and identify representation within the world of diverse books without reinforcing Whiteness as the industry standard.
Diverse Book Finder has developed nine unique book categories that capture the dominant messages conveyed by children's picture books featuring BIPOC.
Actively review the books you have in your classroom, library, or at home. Ask yourself:
What identities are represented? What voices are missing?
Are you in need of more mirrors (a reflection of self) or windows (an understanding of others) for your children or students?
What points of view are you centering? What's missing?