Let’s get reading! Here is a compilation of books on Adoption, Foster Care, Trauma and Healing, Attachment, Down Syndrome, International Development, Race, Kids books, and so much more. Although we have read some of these books, many of these books have come as recommendations from adoptive/ foster parents, professionals in each of these fields, development workers, etc., and are books we have not read. Thank you so much to the many people who gave us these incredible book recommendations, we are excited to read them alongside you and learn with you!
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by Deborah Gray
Attaching in Adoption is a comprehensive guide for prospective and actual adoptive parents on how to understand and care for their adopted child and promote healthy attachment. This classic text provides practical parenting strategies designed to enhance children’s happiness and emotional health. It explains what attachment is, how grief and trauma can affect children’s emotional development, and how to improve attachment, respect, cooperation, and trust. The book covers a wide range of issues including international adoption, Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder, and learning disabilities, and combines sound theory and direct advice with case examples throughout. This book is a must-read for anyone interested in adoption and for all adoptive families.
by Kathryn Joyce
The Child Catchers is a shocking exposé of what the adoption industry has become and how it got there, told through deep investigative reporting and the heartbreaking stories of individuals who became collateral damage in a market driven by profit and, now, pulpit command. Anyone who seeks to adopt—of whatever faith or no faith, and however well-meaning—is affected by the evangelical adoption movement, whether they know it or not. The movement has shaped the way we think about adoption, the language we use to discuss it, the places we seek to adopt from, and the policies and laws that govern the process. In The Child Catchers, Kathryn Joyce reveals with great sensitivity and empathy why, if we truly care for children, we need to see more clearly.
Confession of an Adoptive Parent
by Mike Berry
Adopting or fostering a child brings its own unique set of challenges only another parent facing the same uphill climb could possibly understand. From parenting children with traumatic pasts, to dealing with attachment issues, to raising a child with special needs, it can sometimes be a struggle just getting through the day.
by Krish Kandiah
“A fantastic resource on a holistic approach from a Christian perspective on foster/adoptive care.”
by Heather Avis
As the mother of three adopted children – two with Down syndrome – Heather Avis has learned that it’s truly the lucky few who get to live a life like hers, who actually recognize that God’s plans are best, even when they seem so radically different from the plans we have for ourselves.
by Heather Avis
In a world of divisions and margins, those who act, look, and grow a little differently are all too often shoved aside. Scoot Over and Make Some Room is part inspiring narrative and part encouraging challenge for us all to listen and learn from those we’re prone to ignore.
Twenty Things Adopted Kids Wish Their Adoptive Parents Knew
By Sherrie Eldridge
“Birthdays may be difficult for me.” “I want you to take the initiative in opening conversations about my birth family.” “When I act out my fears in obnoxious ways, please hang in there with me.” “I am afraid you will abandon me.”
Wise Adoptive Parenting When Kids Struggle to Adopt Their Parents
By Ron Nydam Ph.D
A guide for adoptive families that find themselves struggling. Gentle yet realistic words bring hope-filled encouragement and down-to-earth insight for parents who may be struggling with the underbelly of adoption. The author, an experienced and empathetic therapist specializing in issues of adoptive development, weaves threads of relinquishment, adoption, and parenting challenges into a practical, honest tapestry rich in worth, love, and belonging. Adoptees and their two sets of parents receive voice and will feel understood and empowered. Families will discover new ways of being together, and caregivers will gain clinical insight in this book, a valuable addition to resources available to all who are touched by relinquishment and adoption.
By Kathy Harrison
The startling and ultimately uplifting narrative of one woman’s thirteen-year experience as a foster parent.
For more than a decade, Kathy Harrison has sheltered a shifting cast of troubled youngsters-the offspring of prostitutes and addicts; the sons and daughters of abusers; and teenage parents who aren’t equipped for parenthood. All this, in addition to raising her three biological sons and two adopted daughters. What would motivate someone to give herself over to constant, largely uncompensated chaos? For Harrison, the answer is easy.
By Christie Erwin
Every foster parent knows how hard, yet rewarding, it can be to care for a child with a difficult past and an uncertain future. Christie Erwin has been a mom, in the middle, for countless children over nearly two decades. In this poignant and insightful book, she honestly shares the reality of making yourself vulnerable to the pain and indescribable delight of giving your heart away to a child. If you have ever considered foster parenting and just aren’t sure you have what it takes, let Christie’s inspiring, faith-filled story assure you that there is One that can and will equip you with all you need.
By Levi Gideon Shepherd
For the memoir loving reader who wants to hear from a former foster youth (Christian perspective)
Ready or Not: 30-Days of Discovery for Foster and Adoptive Parents
By Pam Parish
Entering the journey of foster care and adoption can be one of the most daunting decisions that you make as a parent. Parenting a child who has experienced trauma and loss is a rewarding experience, but it’s not easy. In this biblically-centered and straightforward book, Pam Parish helps parents to:-Consider the impact of foster care and adoption on their lives and families.-Evaluate their motives and expectations for the foster care and adoption experience.-Explore foster care and adoption through the lens of scripture.
by Jason Johnson
Foster parents face a unique set of circumstances and experience a wide array of emotions that few can relate to. Their journey is one of equal parts beauty and brokenness, joy and heartache, excitement and exhaustion. There is no textbook on how to be a foster parent, no formula, no simple three-step guide. But there is hope—in God’s capacity to bring great beauty out of tragic brokenness. This is the gospel—the lens through which you can filter your foster parenting journey and ultimately find the strength, motivation, and courage you need to be sustained along the way.ReFraming Foster Care is a collection of reflections on the foster parenting journey designed to help you do just that—find hope—and to remind you that your work is worth it and you are not alone.
By Ashley Rhodes-Courter
“Sunshine, you’re my baby and I’m your only mother. You must mind the one taking care of you, but she’s not your mama.” Ashley Rhodes-Courter spent nine years of her life in fourteen different foster homes, living by those words. As her mother spirals out of control, Ashley is left clinging to an unpredictable, dissolving relationship, all the while getting pulled deeper and deeper into the foster care system. Painful memories of being taken away from her home quickly become consumed by real-life horrors, where Ashley is juggled between caseworkers, shuffled from school to school, and forced to endure manipulative, humiliating treatment from a very abusive foster family. In this inspiring, unforgettable memoir, Ashley finds the courage to succeed – and in doing so, discovers the power of her own voice.
To the End of June: The Intimate Life of American Foster Care
By Cris Beam
Who are the children of foster care? What, as a country, do we owe them? Cris Beam, a foster mother herself, spent five years immersed in the world of foster care looking into these questions and tracing firsthand stories. The result is To the End of June, an unforgettable portrait that takes us deep inside the lives of foster children in their search for a stable, loving family. Beam shows us the intricacies of growing up in the system—the back-and-forth with agencies, the rootless shuffling between homes, the emotionally charged tug between foster and birth parents, the terrifying push out of foster care and into adulthood. Humanizing and challenging a broken system, To the End of June offers a tribute to resiliency and hope for real change.
By Mick Pease
For too long, the world’s lonely and vulnerable children have been forgotten and ignored. Millions of children are abandoned for a life on the streets or live with unsafe families or in soulless institutions. Now the tide is turning. Pioneers like Mick Pease and his remarkable charity SFAC lead a global movement for change. This insightful and uplifting book takes us on a journey that spans three decades and five continents. We meet judges and social workers, missionaries and aid workers, the children and families themselves. Mick asks tough questions, such as: Would you want your children in a safe family or in an institution? Would you want them to belong to something or to someone? He offers proven solutions for children separated from their families in widely different societies, from the hills of Myanmar to the sprawling cities of Brazil. SFAC supports measures to keep children in their families and communities or to find safe alternatives where this is not possible. The key is always the best interests of the child.
By Steve Corbett and Brian Fikkert
With more than 225,000 copies sold, When Helping Hurts is a paradigm-forming contemporary classic on the subject of poverty alleviation and ministry to those in need. Emphasizing the poverty of both heart and society, this book exposes the
need that every person has and how it can be filled. The reader is brought to understand that poverty is much more than simply a lack of financial or material resources and that it takes much more than donations and handouts to solve the problem of
poverty. While this book exposes past and current development efforts that churches have engaged in which unintentionally undermine the people they’re trying to help, its central point is to provide proven strategies that challenge Christians to help the poor empower themselves. Focusing on both North American and Majority World contexts, When Helping Hurts catalyzes the idea that sustainable change for people living in poverty comes not from the outside-in, but from the inside-out.
Attachment, Trauma, and Healing:
Attaching Through Love, Hugs, and Play
By Deborah Gray
Capturing the warmth and fun of forming close relationships with children, this book offers simple advice to parents of children who find it difficult to attach and bond – whether following adoption, divorce, or other difficult experiences.
By Bessel Van Der Kolk, M.D.
On the physical and emotional toll that trauma takes.
By Kristen Berry
Kristin Berry tells her family’s adoption story honestly and does not shy away from the challenges she and her family have faced, including isolation and depression. Written with her son’s blessings, in the hopes that others will learn about and understand what it is like to live with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS) and Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders FASD.”Mom, you need to write the truth. It is hard to live with FASD. I hate that I have hurt people. I hate that school is hard. I hate that I always make the wrong choice. I hate living like this. People need to know what this is like. People need to know that drinking while pregnant is never okay. People need to know!”
The Connected Child: Bring Hope and Healing to Your Adoptive Family
By Dr. Karyn Purvis
The adoption of a child is always a joyous moment in the life of a family. Some adoptions, though, present unique challenges. Welcoming these children into your family–and addressing their special needs–requires care, consideration, and compassion. Written by two research psychologists specializing in adoption and attachment, The Connected Child will help you:-Build bonds of affection and trust with your adopted child-Effectively deal with any learning or behavioral disorders-Discipline your child with love without making him or her feel threatened.
By Nadine Burke Harris
The stunning news of Burke Harris’s research is just how deeply our bodies can be imprinted by ACEs—adverse childhood experiences like abuse, neglect, parental addiction, mental illness, and divorce. Childhood adversity changes our biological systems and lasts a lifetime. For anyone who has faced a difficult childhood, or who cares about the millions of children who do, the fascinating scientific insight and innovative, acclaimed health interventions in The Deepest Well represent vitally important hope for preventing lifelong illness for those we love and for generations to come.
The Mystery of Risk: Drugs, Alcohol, Pregnancy and the Vulnerable Child
By Ira J Chasnoff
The ill-effects of a baby’s exposure to drugs and alcohol while in the womb are demonstrated in this essential reference with cutting-edge information from the fields of medicine, neuroscience, and child psychology. These findings posit that many of the learning and behavior problems seen in children—from poor school performance to patterns of impulsivity often diagnosed as ADHD—are both treatable and preventable.
No-Drama Discipline: The Whole-Brain Way to Calm the Chaos and Nurture Your Child’s Developing Mind
By Daniel J Siegel and Tina Payne Bryson
Highlighting the fascinating link between a child’s neurological development and the way a parent reacts to misbehavior, No-Drama Discipline provides an effective, compassionate road map for dealing with tantrums, tensions, and tears—without causing a scene.
Nurturing Adoptions: Creating Resilience After Neglect and Trauma
By Deborah D. Gray
Adopted children who have suffered trauma and neglect have structural brain change, as well as specific developmental and emotional needs. They need particular care to build attachment and overcome trauma. This book provides professionals with the knowledge and advice they need to help adoptive families build positive relationships and help children heal. It explains how neglect, trauma, and prenatal exposure to drugs or alcohol affect the brain and emotional development and explains how to recognize these effects and attachment issues in children. It also provides ways to help children settle into new families and home and school approaches that encourage children to flourish.
The Out-of-Sync Child: Recognizing and Coping With Sensory Processing Disorder
By Carol Kranowitz
The groundbreaking book explains Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD)–and presents a drug-free approach that offers hope for parents.
By Peter Levine and Maggie Kline
An essential guide for recognizing, preventing, and healing childhood trauma, from infancy through adolescence—what parents, educators, and health professionals can do. Trauma can result not only from catastrophic events such as abuse, violence, or loss of loved ones, but from natural disasters and everyday incidents such as auto accidents, medical procedures, divorce, or even falling off a bicycle. At the core of this book is the understanding of how trauma is imprinted on the body, brain, and spirit, resulting in anxiety, nightmares, depression, physical illnesses, addictions, hyperactivity, and aggression.
By Daniel Siegel and Tina Payne Bryson
Daniel J. Siegel, neuropsychiatrist and author of the bestselling Mindsight, and parenting expert Tina Payne Bryson offer a revolutionary approach to child rearing with twelve key strategies that foster healthy brain development, leading to calmer, happier children. The authors explain—and make accessible—the new science of how a child’s brain is wired and how it matures. The “upstairs brain,” which makes decisions and balances emotions, is under construction until the mid-twenties. And especially in young children, the right brain and its emotions tend to rule over the logic of the left brain. No wonder kids throw tantrums, fight, or sulk in silence. By applying these discoveries to everyday parenting, you can turn any outburst, argument, or fear into a chance to integrate your child’s brain and foster vital growth.
Wounded Children Healing Homes: How Traumatized Children Impact Adoptive and Foster Families
By Jayne E. Schooler, Betsy Keefer Smalley, and Timothy J. Callahan
Why doesn’t our child return our love? What are we failing to understand? What are we failing to do? These questions can fill the minds of adoptive parents caring for wounded, traumatized children. Families often enter into this experience with high expectations for their child and for themselves but are broadsided by shattered assumptions. This book addresses the reality of those unmet expectations and offers validation and solutions for the challenges of parenting deeply traumatized and emotionally disturbed children.
Dream With Me: Race, Love, and the Struggle We Must Win
By John M Perkins
According to recent surveys and studies, race relations in the United States are the worst they’ve been since the 1990s, and many would argue that life for most minorities has not significantly improved since the civil rights era of the 1960s. For so many, the dream of true equality has dissolved into a reality of prejudice, fear, and violence as a way of life.
By Angie Thomas
A powerful and brave novel about what prejudice looks like in the 21st century.”A stunning, brilliant, gut-wrenching novel that will be remembered as a classic of our time.” John Green No. 1 New York Times bestseller. Sixteen-year-old Starr lives in two worlds: the poor neighborhood where she was born and raised and her posh high school in the suburbs. The uneasy balance between them is shattered when Starr is the only witness to the fatal shooting of her unarmed best friend, Khalil, by a police officer.
By Beth Hall and Gail Steinberg
Is transracial adoption a positive choice for kids? How can children gain their new families without losing their birth heritage? How can parents best support their children after placement? Transracial adoption is a lifelong journey, complex and challenging. But it can work well for kids and families if parents acknowledge that race and adoption matter and educate themselves to meet the challenges ahead. This book is designed to support transracial adoptive parents in their lifelong learning process.
One Blood: Parting Words to the Church on Race and Love
By John Perkins
We are living in historic times. Not since the civil rights movement of the 60s has our country been this vigorously engaged in the reconciliation conversation. There is a great opportunity right now for culture to change, to be a more perfect union. However, it cannot be done without the church, because the faith of the people is more powerful than any law government can enact.
Adopted for Life: The Priority of Adoption for Christian Families and Churches
By Russell Moore
The doctrine of adoption—God’s decision to adopt sinful men and women into his family—stands at the heart of Christianity. In light of this, Christians’ efforts to adopt beautifully illustrate the truth of the gospel. In this popular-level and practical manifesto, Russell Moore encourages Christians to adopt children and to help other Christian families to do the same. He shows that adoption is not just about couples who have struggled to have children. Rather, it’s about an entire culture within evangelicalism—a culture that sees adoption as part of the Great Commission mandate and as a sign of the gospel itself.
By Sara Brinton and Amanda Bennett
Using their own experience in the adoption industry the authors ask the difficult questions. In Defense of the Fatherless will challenge you, inform you and bring you to a deeper understanding of the issues faced around international adoption.
The Life Giving Parent: Giving Your Child a Life Worth Living for Christ
By Sally Clarkson and Clay Clarkson
In today’s world, it’s easy to become overwhelmed and even paralyzed by the constant flow of parenting advice. We’re flooded with so much practical information that we wonder if we’re choosing the right way. And we may be missing the one thing God really wants us to give to our children: His life. God doesn’t include a divine methodology for parenting in the Bible, but He does provide principles that can enable any faithful parent to bring His life into the life of their home.
Replanted: Faith-Based Support for Adoptive and Foster Families
By Jenn Ranter Hook, Joshua N. Hook, and Mike Berry
Many people embark on the journey of adoption and foster care but are unprepared for the challenges that await them along the way. Replanted takes an honest look at the joys and hardships that come with choosing this journey and provides a model of faith-based support made up of three parts to help families thrive: Soil, Sunlight, and Water.
Handbook on Thriving as an Adoptive Family
By Focus on The Family
Adoption is a high calling from God, and the Christian home primary soil for planting seeds of faith. But how will post-adoption challenges affect this growth? Most agencies do a great job of connecting families with children who need a forever family. Not many prepare you for the unexpected issues―an adopted child fighting with his new siblings or not wanting to be touched or showing signs of reactive attachment disorder (RAD). The more you know, the more confident you will be to meet the unique needs of your adopted child and your entire family. This distinctly Christian book will equip readers to be successful adoptive parents.
28 Days: Moments in Black History that Changed the World
By Charles R. Smith Jr.
Each day features a different influential figure in African-American history, from Crispus Attucks, the first man shot in the Boston Massacre, sparking the Revolutionary War, to Madame C. J. Walker, who after years of adversity became the wealthiest black woman in the country, as well as one of the wealthiest black Americans, to Barack Obama, the country’s first African-American president.
By Katie Kissinger
Celebrate the essence of one way we are all special and different from one another—our skin color! This bilingual (English/Spanish) book offers children a simple, scientifically accurate explanation about how our skin color is determined by our ancestors, the sun, and melanin. It’s also filled with colorful photographs that capture the beautiful variety of skin tones. Reading this book frees children from the myths and stereotypes associated with skin color and helps them build positive identities as they accept, understand, and value our rich and diverse world. Unique activity ideas are included to help you extend the conversation with children.
By: Karen Katz
Seven-year-old Lena is going to paint a picture of herself. She wants to use brown paint for her skin. But when she and her mother take a walk through the neighborhood, Lena learns that brown comes in many different shades. Through the eyes of a little girl who begins to see her familiar world in a new way, this book celebrates the differences and similarities that connect all people. Karen Katz created this book for her daughter, Lena, whom she and her husband adopted from Guatemala six years ago.
ColorFull: Celebrating the Colors God Gave Us
By Ms. Dorena Williamson
Imani and Kayla are the best of friends who are learning to celebrate their different skin colors. As they look around them at the amazing colors in nature, they can see that their skin is another example of God’s creativity! This joyful story takes a new approach to discuss race: instead of being colorblind, we can choose to celebrate each color God gave us and be colorFULL instead.
By Jacqueline Woods
There are many reasons to feel different. Maybe it’s how you look or talk, or where you’re from; maybe it’s what you eat, or something just as random. It’s not easy to take those first steps into a place where nobody really knows you yet, but somehow you do it.
Jacqueline Woodson’s lyrical text and Rafael López’s dazzling art reminds us that we all feel like outsiders sometimes-and how brave it is that we go forth anyway. And that sometimes, when we reach out and begin to share our stories, others will be happy to meet us halfway.
By Caryl Hart
Girls come in all different colors and sizes.
They delight and amaze us.
They’re full of surprises.
Girls can do anything they want to do.
And if YOU are a girl . . .
You can do these things too!
Henry’s Freedom Box: A True Story from the Underground Railroad
By Ellen Levine
Henry Brown doesn’t know how old he is. Nobody keeps records of slaves’ birthdays. All the time he dreams about freedom, but that dream seems farther away than ever when he is torn from his family and put to work in a warehouse. Henry grows up and marries, but he is again devastated when his family is sold at the slave market. Then one day, as he lifts a crate at the warehouse, he knows exactly what he must do: He will mail himself to the North. After an arduous journey in the crate, Henry finally has a birthday — his first day of freedom.
By Carson Ellis
Home might be a house in the country, an apartment in the city, or even a shoe. Home may be on the road or the sea, in the realm of myth, or in the artist’s own studio. A meditation on the concept of home and a visual treat that invites many return visits.
Hooray for You: A Celebration of You-ness
By Marianne Richmond
Hooray for You! is a celebration of “you-ness” ― the grand sum of body, mind, and heart that makes every person truly unique! The perfect gift of congratulations, encouragement, or just because, Hooray for You! is the ideal way to commemorate the simplest or most significant life accomplishments.
By Donna Keith
This humorous, rhyming story features three bear siblings who are very different: they don’t look the same or sound the same or eat the same. Brown Bear only wants honey; Polar Bear craves fish, and little Panda Bear snacks only on bamboo shoots. When playing hide-and-seek in the snow, Polar Bear always wins. And little Polar and Panda are always bored while Brown Bear is hibernating. How could they get along in a family when they are so, so different? With gentleness and love, Mama Bear and Papa Bear assure their cubs that even though they are different, they are loved the same, and God put them in the same family for a purpose.
By Donna Keith
I Love You Even When, with a comforting message of unconditional love even when you do something wrong, tells a story with the bear brothers and sister through sweet rhyming text and cozy illustrations.
By Donna Keith
I Love You Just Because will help little ones understand their parents’ love for them and that it doesn’t have to be earned. With playful artwork and the same friendly bear family, you already know and love from Donna Keith’s first two books—I Love You All the Same and I Love You Even When—the sweet story of this book will touch you and your family and will remind you that family members love each other…just because.
By Patrice Karst
The Invisible String is a heartwarming story that reassures children that even though they can’t always be with a loved one, they’re always in each other’s hearts. Whenever a child thinks about a family member, the invisible string gives a tug. This book is an excellent way to begin the conversation about death. The gentle story illustrates that we are still connected by love even after someone passes.
By Todd Parr
It’s Okay to Be Different cleverly delivers the important messages of acceptance, understanding, and confidence in an accessible, child-friendly format.
By: Matt de la Pena
Every Sunday after church, CJ and his grandma ride the bus across town. But today, CJ wonders why they don’t own a car like his friend Colby. Why doesn’t he have an iPod like the boys on the bus? How come they always have to get off in the dirty part of town? Each question is met with an encouraging answer from grandma, who helps him see the beauty—and fun—in their routine and the world around them. This energetic ride through a bustling city highlights the wonderful perspective only grandparent and grandchild can share and comes to life through Matt de la Pena’s vibrant text and Christian Robinson’s radiant illustrations.
By Sherrie Eldridge
Ever wonder how to “talk adoption” with your adopted or foster child? Rest assured… you’re not alone! Your heart breaks when considering the pre-adoption trauma your child endured. Should you encourage your child to talk about it? The good news is that you don’t have to figure it all out. Let Little Branch lead you and your child into the complexities of adoption through his own story. As he shares his grief, loss, and joy, your child will identify and find new freedom to do the same when talking about adoption with you.
Little Dreamer: Visionary Women Around the World
Featuring the true stories of 35 women creators, ranging from writers to inventors, artists to scientists, Little Dreamers: Visionary Women Around the World inspires as it educates. Readers will meet trailblazing women like Mary Blair, an American modernist painter who had a major influence on how color was used in early animated films, actor/inventor Hedy Lamarr, environmental activist Wangari Maathai, architect Zaha Hadid, filmmaker Maya Deren, and physicist Chien-Shiung Wu. Some names are known, some are not, but all of the women had a lasting effect on the fields they worked in.
Little Leaders: Bold Women in Black History
By Vashti Harrison
Meet 40 trailblazing women who broke barriers of race and gender to pave the way for future generations. Little Leaders: Bold Women in Black History is important, timely, and written in a style that kids will enjoy.
Little Legends: Exceptional Men in Black History
By Vashti Harrison
Among these biographies, readers will find aviators and artists, politicians and pop stars, athletes and activists. The exceptional men featured include artist Aaron Douglas, civil rights leader John Lewis, dancer Alvin Ailey, filmmaker Oscar Micheaux, musician Prince, photographer Gordon Parks, tennis champion Arthur Ashe, and writer James Baldwin. The legends in this book span centuries and continents, but what they have in common is that each one has blazed a trail for generations to come.
By Matt de la Peña
“Love can be found in many areas of our life–in music, in nature, in the people around us. This beautiful picture book, created by an award-winning author/illustrator duo, celebrates the many ways love buoys us throughout our lives. A comforting and thoughtful book to keep on a child’s bookshelf for years to come.”
By Jamie Sandefer
Written from the foster parent to the foster child, it takes you through an abbreviated look at the emotions a young foster child experiences throughout their transition to a new home. The message to the child is that while they are in that home, they will be safe and loved. It also serves as a keepsake book with a journaling section. This portion of the book includes places for photos, journaling lines, and simple writing prompts. Children in foster care move an average of seven times in their lives. The keepsake section of this book gives the foster family an opportunity to provide the child with a piece of their history if they leave.
Martin’s Big Words (Big Words): The Life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
By Doreen Rappaport
This picture-book biography is an excellent and accessible introduction for young readers to learn about one of the world’s most influential leaders, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Doreen Rappaport weaves the immortal words of Dr. King into a captivating narrative to tell the story of his life.
By Michael Leannah & Jennifer E. Morris
The world can be a scary place. Anxious adults want children to be aware of dangers, but shouldn’t kids be aware of kindness too?
Not All Princesses Dress in Pink
By Heidi E. Y. Stemple & Jane Yolen
Not all princesses dress in pink.
Some play in bright red socks that stink,
blue team jerseys that don’t quite fit,
accessorized with a baseball mitt,
and a sparkly crown!
By Jacqueline Woodson
Clover’s mom says it isn’t safe to cross the fence that segregates their African-American side of town from the white side where Anna lives. But the two girls strike up a friendship and get around the grown-ups’ rules by sitting on top of the fence together.
By Kelly Greenawalt
Brimming with warmth and color, Princess Truly’s rhythmic rhyming adventures are a celebration of individuality, girl power, and diversity. A perfect graduation gift, this heartfelt story is a reminder to young girls everywhere that they can achieve anything if they put their minds to it…and dream big!
Princess Truly in My Magical, Sparkling Curls
By Kelly Greenawalt
Princess Truly is back! In the second Princess Truly adventure, Truly’s magical, sparkling curls have the power to transport her to exciting new places like the Egyptian pyramids, the Jurassic period, and even into outer space. With curiosity, bravery, and her signature smarts, Princess Truly once again proves that she can do anything she sets her mind to and reminds girls everywhere to reach for the stars, believe in themselves, and dream big!
By Tom Percival
Ruby loves being Ruby. Until, one day, she finds a worry. At first, it’s not such a big worry, and that’s all right, but then it starts to grow. It gets bigger and bigger every day and it makes Ruby sad. How can Ruby get rid of it and feel like herself again? A perceptive and poignant story that is a must-have for all children’s bookshelves.
By Jenny Sue Kostecki-Shaw
Elliot lives in America, and Kailash lives in India. They are pen pals. By exchanging letters and pictures, they learn that they both love to climb trees, have pets, and go to school. Their worlds might look different, but they are actually similar. Same, same. But different!
By Rachel Isadora
Carmelita loves to greet everyone in her colorful neighborhood. There are people from so many different cultures! They all like to say hello too, so now Carmelita can say hello in Spanish, English, French, Japanese, and many other languages. And her dog, Manny? Well, he seems to understand everyone, and gives a happy “Woof!” wherever he goes.
By Sheila M. Kelly & Shelley Rotner
A celebration of the diversity of everyday life, this exploration of one of our most noticeable physical traits pairs simple text with vibrant photographs. At school, at the beach, and in the city, diverse groups of children invite young readers both to take notice and to look beyond the obvious.
The Smallest Girl in the Smallest Grade
By Justin Roberts
Hardly anyone noticed young Sally McCabe. She was the smallest girl in the smallest grade. But Sally notices everything—from the twenty-seven keys on the janitor’s ring to the bullying happening on the playground. One day, Sally has had enough and decides to make herself heard. And when she takes a chance and stands up to the bullies, she finds that one small girl can make a big difference.
This is How We Do It: One Day in the Lives of Seven Kids from Around the World
By Matt Lamothe
In Japan, Kei plays Freeze Tag, while in Uganda, Daphine likes to jump rope. While the way they play may differ, the shared rhythm of their days—and this one world we all share—unites them.
Thoughtfull: Discovering the Unique Gifts in Each of Us
By Ms. Dorena Williamson
This encouraging story shows how life changes when we learn to value those who are differently-abled and to champion the power of thoughtfulness.
By Matt Haig
“Wherever she is, whatever the day,
She only has one kind of thing to say.
Just as cats go miaow and cows go moo,
The Truth Pixie can only say things that are true.”
A very funny and lovable tale of how one special pixie learned to love herself. The Truth Pixie is an enchanting, rhyming story that will delight younger readers – with words by the bestselling mastermind Matt Haig and pictures by the inky genius Chris Mould.
We Belong Together: A Book About Adoption and Families
By Todd Parr
In a kid-friendly, accessible way, this book explores the ways that people can choose to come together to make a family by showing one perspective on the adoption experience.
By Matthew Paul Turner
From early on, children are looking to discover their place in the world and longing to understand how their personalities, traits, and talents fit in. The assurance that they are deeply loved and a unique creation in our big universe is certain to help them spread their wings and fly.