All Ages

Books and Resources to Help You Raise Anti-Racist Children

by the Brightly Editors

America is still deeply racially divided — nothing has made that more clear than the murders of members of the Black community at the hands of law enforcement. Now more than ever, it’s time for a change. And that change can start at home.

It’s never too early to talk to children about race. According to HealthyChildren.org, “As early as 6 months, a baby’s brain can notice race-based differences. By ages 2 to 4, children can internalize racial bias. By age 12, many children become set in their beliefs—giving parents a decade to mold the learning process, so that it decreases racial bias and improves cultural understanding.”

It can often feel like the world is full of anger and hate, but it’s also full of hope — hope for a better future. It’s so important for children to see themselves and their experiences represented in the books they read. It’s also important for children to read about the experiences of people who are different from them. At Brightly, we’re committed to helping you raise kids that are not only “not racist,” but who are actively “anti-racist.” Anti-racism is defined as, “the policy or practice of opposing racism and promoting racial tolerance.”

Reading books featuring Black characters and experiences provide a great way to start a conversation about race with the kids in your life. But support for the Black community goes well beyond that. We’ve complied further reading resources for parents and educators — from how to talk to your kids about protests to understanding white privilege — as well as ways you can support Black-owned bookstores, bloggers, and donate to organizations that fight for Black lives. Black Lives Matter, and it’s vital that we become more educated and act, with and for our children.

 

EDUCATE


Books provide a great way to start a conversation about race with the kids in your life. In addition to book picks for kids and adults, further reading resources for parents and educators offer more ways to teach kids about race and understand why it’s important to be an anti-racist.

Further Reading

Resources for Parents 

How to Talk to Your Kids About Race: Books and Resources That Can Help (Brightly)

Talking to Children About Racial Bias (HealthyChildren.org)

Children Are Not Colorblind: How Young Children Learn Race (Academia)

How silence can breed prejudice: A child development professor explains how and why to talk to kids about race (Washington Post)

How to talk to your children about protests and racism (CNN)

Why It’s Important to Talk to Your Child About Racism and Hate (Brightly)

Anti-Racist Books and Resources for Our Readers (Penguin Random House)

Books to Help Kids Understand the Fight for Racial Equality (Brightly)

How to Diversify Your Child’s Bookshelves (Brightly

 

Resources for Educators 

Race Talk: Engaging Young People in Conversations about Race and Racism (ADL)

15 Classroom Resources for Discussing Racism, Policing, and Protest (Education Week: Teacher)

How Should I Talk about Race in My Mostly White Classroom? (ADL)

Teaching Young Children about Race (Teaching for Change

Teaching Tolerance

Social Justice Resources (The Children’s Community School)

 

More Anti-Racism Resources for Adults 

Harvard University’s Implicit Bias Test (Harvard)

White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Backpack (The National SEED Project

75 Things White People Can Do for Racial Justice (Medium

How Racism Invented Race in America, Ta-Nehisi Coates (The Atlantic

The Greatest White Privilege Is Life Itself (The Atlantic

The 1619 Project (The New York Times)

White Allyship 101: Resources to Get To Work (Dismantle Collective

Showing Up For Racial Justice’s Educational Toolkits (Showing Up for Racial Justice

Anti-Racism Project

 

ACT


It’s important to educate ourselves, but it’s also vital to take action. Support Black-owned business, donate to organizations that fight for Black lives, and more.

 

Black-Owned Bookstores 

New York

The Lit. Bar
Sister’s Uptown Bookstore

Pensylvannia

The Black Reserve Bookstore
Uncle Bobbie’s Coffee & Books

California

Multi-Cultural Children’s Bookstore
Ashay by the Bay

Georgia

Black Dot Cultural Center
Medu Bookstore

Oklahoma

Mocha Books

Michigan

Detroit Book City

Illinois

AfriWare Books

Washington (State)

L.E.M.S Bookstore

Washington (D.C.)

Mahogany Books

Tennessee

Alkebu-Lan Images Bookstore

Maryland

Everyone’s Place

To support more Black-owned independent bookstores, see this list.

Black Children’s Bookstagrammers 

Here Wee Read (@hereweeread)
The Tutu Teacher (@thetututeacher)
Little Black Book Nook (@littleblackbooknook)
Mrs. Russell’s Room (@mrsrussellsroom)
Black Baby Books (@blackbabybooks)
Books of Melanin (@booksofmelanin)
Books Through My Eyes (@booksthroughmyeyes)
Jeanell Nicole (@jeanellnicolereads)
Akossiwa Ketoglo (@akossket)
If Pencils Could Talk (@ifpencilscouldtalk)
Read Boston (@readboston)
Mx. T (@teachingwithmxt)

Donate

Official George Floyd Memorial Fund
“This fund is established to cover funeral and burial expenses, mental and grief counseling, lodging and travel for all court proceedings, and to assist our family in the days to come as we continue to seek justice for George.  A portion of these funds will also go to the Estate of George Floyd for the benefit and care of his children and their educational fund.”

Black Lives Matter
“We appreciate your support of the movement and our ongoing fight to end State-sanctioned violence, liberate Black people, and end white supremacy forever.”

The Bail Project
“The Bail Project™ National Revolving Bail Fund is on a mission to combat mass incarceration and reshape the pretrial system in the United States.”

Reclaim the Block
“Reclaim the Block is calling on our city to invest in violence prevention, housing, resources for youth, emergency mental health response teams, and solutions to the opioid crisis – not more police.”

Community Bail Fund
“Split a donation to all the bail funds, mutual aid funds, and activist organizations listed on this page, or allocate specific amounts to individual groups.”

The Loveland Foundation
“Loveland Therapy Fund provides financial assistance to Black women and girls nationally seeking therapy.”

Color of Change
“We design campaigns powerful enough to end practices that unfairly hold Black people back, and champion solutions that move us all forward. Until justice is real.”

NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund
“Donate today to help us win landmark legal battles, protect voters across the nation, and advance the cause of racial justice, equality, and an inclusive society.”

National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP)
“Your donation to the NAACP helps further our mission to ensure the political, educational, social and economic equality of rights of all persons and to eliminate racial hatred and racial discrimination.”

Petition

Sign a petition calling for justice for George Floyd
Sign a petition calling for justice for Breonna Taylor
Sign a petition calling for justice for Ahmaud Arbery
Sign the Black Lives Matter petition to #DefundThePolice
Sign a petition for Mandatory Life Sentence for Police Brutality

Text FLOYD to 55156 for George Floyd
Text ENOUGH to 55156 for Breonna Taylor
Text JUSTICE to 55156 for Ahmaud Arbery

More ways you can donate and petition.