This has been a rough week for a lot of us. We’ve read in the news and heard firsthand stories of uncertainty and fear from our children and their classmates and from neighbors and friends. The presidential election’s hateful rhetoric has prompted kids to worry about what is to come under the incoming administration: “Will people hurt us?” “Will people hurt YOU?” “Will we have to leave our home?”
Jacqueline Woodson, winner of the National Book Award and Coretta Scott King Award (among many other accolades), writes in this piece for the New York Times Magazine, “How Do I Comfort My Frightened Son After the Election?”: “In all my childhood, I never heard my grandparents say that anything shocked or surprised them. They knew what their country was capable of.”
We have to do better. Together.
We want to recommit to the idea that Family Reading is for ALL families — a place to hear EVERYONE’S stories and to go forward together. Please share your experiences with us — it always helps to get things out in the open, to shine a light through the darkness. If you’d like to write a guest post for Family Reading, send an email to Elissa (egershowitz[at]hbook[dot]com) and/or Kitty (kflynn[at]hbook[dot]com).
And let’s keep reading to the kids in our lives and discussing the ways books can heal division and build bridges (not walls!).
SOME RESOURCES FROM THE HORN BOOK
The Horn Book’s Talking About Race page
On Jacqueline Woodson: “Who Can Tell My Story?”
“Young Dreamers” by Christopher Myers
Vaunda Micheaux Nelson: “Mind the Gaps: Books for ALL Young Readers”
“Loud in the Library: Creating Social Activists at School” by Liz Phipps Soeiro
Nonfiction Notes from the Horn Book: Recommended books about Activism
Recommended picture books for International Day of Peace
ADDITIONAL RESOURCES FROM THE WEB
The American Library Association’s booklist “Unity. Kindness. Peace.”
“A Declaration in Support of Children” at The Brown Bookshelf