I don't own the rights to any of the content. This is a curated resource list of high interest diverse text.
Bookie Blogger's Dynamic Elementary Reviews
When My Cousins Come to Town by Angela Shante, Illustrated by Keisha Morris Summary: This story takes you through the joyous time a little girl experiences when she is with her cousins. There is nothing more that warms her heart as she looks forward to spending time with them every year for a great portion of summer vacation. There is just one problem, everyone has a nickname except for her. They are not just meaningless nicknames but names that identify who they are, and what they do well. This summer she is hoping that she makes her mark and receives a name that represents her strengths. Will this happen for her? Will her pinky finger bring her good luck? Strengths: This story is a representation of the bond that cousins have in families all over the world. The relationships in this story paint a picture of how families connect and demonstrate their love for one another. It shows how each relationship has a profound impact on the family dynamics. Weaknesses: There are no weaknesses. Although, the story focuses on a family gathering in the summer, it can easily be applied to anytime a family partakes in a celebration. Thoughts: If you are a part of a family with strong emotional bonds and relationships you are bound to giggle. When introducing new stories to students it is always the hope that a connection will be made. This is one of the stories where the illustrations really make you reflect on how the community is utilized to help cultivate memorable moments that impact relationships.
The Katha Chest by Radhiah Chowdhury, Illustrated by Lavanya Naidu Summary: This story is about Asiya who is a happy little girl that admires the women in her family. She is fascinated by the accomplishments and cultural legacies that have been passed along from generation to generation. One of the traditions that she is most proud about is the “Katha Chest” that belonged to her Nanu. Inside this chest the “kathas” each have a powerful story that describes the journey of her family. The rich fabrics and prints each have their own unique design that represent different time periods in her family’s history. Will there come a time when Asiya will hear the story of Nanu’s quilt? Strengths: Although, this story is fiction, it is believable. Asiya’s imagination influences how she understands her family’s journey. Her thoughts and words are written in a simplified format that includes the five senses and descriptive details. Weaknesses: There are no weaknesses. When reading any books heavily influenced by culture the pronunciation of words are challenging. However, that is what makes them specific to the elements of diversity. Thoughts: The soft undertones of the illustrations and the rich patterns make the story realistic. The author and illustrator used their South Asian backgrounds to guide the reader and educate them on a rich part of India culture.
Hey You! An Empowering Celebration of Growing Up Black by Dapo Adeola Summary: Hey You, tells the story of embracing blackness. From conception through adulthood, it portrays love empowered by the community and family. It encourages individuals to be true to themselves. This story speaks to the qualities of choosing a freedom to be you. It touches on social justice, pride, and history. It promotes advocacy and the right to dream. What will “you” choose when the choice is your own? Strengths: This story speaks to the reality of a lengthy list of things that people often struggle with daily. The inspirational words and relatable illustrations speak to the diversity within the Black race. The collaboration with eighteen illustrators is amazing! This is a story that you will read over and over throughout the years. Weaknesses: Although, it touches on several aspects of life it lacks details, but the illustrations replace the words you typically find in print. Thoughts: This picture book is empowering to people of all ages. It features the importance of the history of black ancestors all the way through the protest of “Black Lives Matter.”