I, along with Jump Into a Book, Franticmommy, am working on a Multicultural Children’s Book Day eBook of diversity, multicultural, and inclusive books lists from bloggers and authors including: All Done Monkey, Books My Kids Read, Crafty Moms Share, Colours of Us, The Educators’ Spin On It, Growing Book by Book, Imagination Soup, InCulture Parent, The Jenny Evolution, Kid World Citizen, The Logonauts, Mama Smiles, Marie Pastiche, The Measured Mom, Randomly Reading, What Do We Do All Day?, Youth Literature Reviews, author Elsa Marson, and author Uma Krishnaswami.
I’ll be contributing a few book lists to contribute and I’m updating them to reflect nuances that I’ve learned through my journey of blogging. In the case of Native American books for children, I wanted to emphasize contemporary stories as some kids including my own, think that American Indians are a relic from the past.
10. Thunder Boy Jr. by Sherman Alexie, illustrated by Yuyi Morales
Sherman Alexie’s first picture book reflects on his Spokane Native American tradition of getting a new name to mark the transition to adulthood. There are 500 federally recognized tribal nations in the United States, each with its own diversity of language, ceremonies, and naming. To respect the deeper meaning of the naming, classroom activities where kids pick their own Indian names are not recommended as it is not culturally sensitive. This is a delightful and funny picture book sure to engage kids. The vibrant illustrations by Caldecott illustrator Yuyi Morales perfectly match the story. [picture book, ages 4 and up]