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Books + Toys That Will Help Diversity Become A Regular Part Of Children's Lives

A running list of suggested resources to actively raise anti-racists.

Raising kids to be racially sensitive and proactive. 

Much of the sentiment last week, surrounding the death of George Floyd and systemic racism in our society, was that education truly is key in overcoming prejudice and we all must continue to watch, listen and learn.

As white people, the burden is on us to soak up and absorb as much as we can right now, and if you're a parent, there's an extra onus on you to educate the little ones in your care. We're not suggesting that you show children the videos of police brutality, but staying silent or using the 'colourblind' rhetoric can allow prejudice and racism to become pervasive norms in homes.

Instead, to actively raise anti-racists, talk openly to your children about racial inequalities in our society on a level that they will understand. A great way to share narratives different to their own is via books and toys. 

We appreciate that it could seem like a minefield trying to approach such a loaded topic with small kids, but spare a thought for the parents of small black children who aren't afforded the option of having the conversation - as it can be the difference between life and death for them.

Below, you'll find a list of books and toys that will help to make diversity become a regular part of children's lives - be that with people of colour and other minority groups such a those in direct provision or indeed, members of the travelling community. 

Do the work. It will always be worth it!

A is for Activist by Innosanto Nagara - SHOP 

This isn't your ordinary alphabet book. Teach your kid about protest, activism and equality while they learn their ABC's.

Hidden Figures by Margot Lee Shetterly - SHOP 

Read the incredibly inspiring true story of four black women who helped NASA launch men in to space.

Happy in Our Skin by Fran Manushk - SHOP 

The title of this book sums it up pretty well -it's a joyful celebration of the new skin of babyhood in all its wonderful forms.

Barbie Fashionistas Doll With Prosthetic Leg - SHOP

Mattel worked with Jordan Reeves, a 13-year-old America disability activist, to create the doll with the prosthetic limb – giving disabled children the opportunity to play with toys that represent them and their lives.

The Boy at the Back of the Class by Onjali Q Raúf - SHOP 

Told with heart and humour, The Boy at the Back of the Class is a child's perspective on the refugee crisis, highlighting the importance of friendship and kindness in a world that doesn't always make sense. 

Antiracist Baby by Ibram X Kendi (out 16 June) - Pre Order 

This book outlines nine steps for building a more equitable world. It is bold and direct, with thoughtful text and bright illustrations, and is a great introduction to racism for toddlers. 

Something Happened in Our Town: A Child's Story About Racial Injustice by Ann Hazzard, Marianne Celano, and Marietta Collins - SHOP 
Written by three psychologists, this book provides extensive notes about how to talk to children about race and racism and trauma, how to identify and counter racial injustice... even including sample dialogues.

People Colours® Crayon Pack - SHOP 
These crayons come in just about all the colours that people do! Children can draw family, friends and famous people regardless of skin colour. 

Charley Barley and All His Friends: A Collection of Traditional Rhymes and Jokes with Artwork by Irish Traveller Children - SHOP 

The first in the series of books dealing with Traveller culture, this book is a collection of rhymes gathered from Traveller children and their families from Sligo to Donegal.

Sulwe by Lupita Nyong'o - SHOP 

A stunningly illustrated book — written by Oscar-winning actress Lupita Nyong'o — about a young girl's journey with colourism, self-esteem, and learning that true beauty comes from within.