Best Children's Books About Diversity

89+ Children's Books About Diversity

Updated Jan. 19, 2019
Indestructibles: Old MacDonald Had a Farm book
#26
Indestructibles: Old MacDonald Had a Farm
Written by Amy Pixton and illustrated by Jonas Sickler
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-2

Indestructibles are the 100 percent baby proof, chew proof, rip proof, completely washable, and nontoxic series of books. Books built for the way babies read, Indestructibles are printed on an amazing nontoxic, paperlike material that holds up to endless chewing, gumming, gnawing, grabbing, bending, and pulling. Then, once the books get dirty, parents can throw them in a dishwasher or washing machine to make them clean as new. The title is adapted from classic nursery rhymes and illustrated by Jonas Sickler. Sickler’s paintings are whimsical and fun, filled with dazzling textures and eye-popping color. They will grab and keep a baby’s attention, and delight adults. The book offers a multicultural twist on a classic nursery rhyme -- Old MacDonald Has a Farm, set in Bolivia is full of llamas, alpacas, sheep, and cows. The text for the nursery rhyme is printed on the back cover.

All about Cats book
#27
All about Cats
Written and illustrated by Monika Filipina
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-7

A hilarious look at what cats get up to when humans aren't around. Contrasting personality traits are put side by side to show how cats - like people - are diverse. The book celebrates positive relationships and the power of the imagination.

Clive and His Hats book
#28
Clive and His Hats
Written and illustrated by Jessica Spanyol
board book
Recommend Ages: 1-3

Meet Clive - and his imagination! Clive loves his collection of hats, and each one suggests a different adventure. He enjoys playing with them, and sharing them with his friends. A gentle, affectionate book, celebrating diversity and challenging gender stereotypes.

Clive and His Bags book
#29
Clive and His Bags
Written and illustrated by Jessica Spanyol
board book
Recommend Ages: 1-3

Meet Clive - and his imagination! Clive loves his collection of bags, and each one suggests a different adventure. He enjoys playing with them, and sharing them with his friends. A gentle, affectionate book, celebrating diversity and challenging gender stereotypes.

Clive and His Babies book
#30
Clive and His Babies
Written and illustrated by Jessica Spanyol
board book
Recommend Ages: 1-3

Meet Clive - and his imagination! Clive loves his dolls. He enjoys playing with them, and sharing them with his friends. A gentle, affectionate book, celebrating diversity and challenging gender stereotypes.

My Year in the Middle book
#31
My Year in the Middle
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

Miss Garrett’s classroom is like every other at our school. White kids sit on one side and black kids on the other. I’m one of the few middle-rowers who split the difference. In a racially polarized classroom in 1970 Alabama, Lu’s talent for running track makes her a new best friend—and tests her mettle as she navigates the school’s social cliques. Sixth-grader Lu Olivera just wants to keep her head down and get along with everyone in her class. Trouble is, Lu’s old friends have been changing lately—acting boy crazy and making snide remarks about Lu’s newfound talent for running track. Lu’s secret hope for a new friend is fellow runner Belinda Gresham, but in 1970 Red Grove, Alabama, blacks and whites don’t mix. As segregationist ex-governor George Wallace ramps up his campaign against the current governor, Albert Brewer, growing tensions in the state—and in the classroom—mean that Lu can’t stay neutral about the racial divide at school. Will she find the gumption to stand up for what’s right and to choose friends who do the same?

When I Grow Up book
#32
When I Grow Up
Written and illustrated by Paula Vasquez
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

What is your family like? All of the children in Miss Ester’s class know what they want to be like when they grow up: their families! And each family is special and unique. Readers will be surprised and delighted to find that Johnny the duckling’s mom and dad have curly tails, stubby noses, and hooves. Johnny and his classmates make it easy for parents to show their little ones that there are many types of families, and they’re all made of love. Paula Vásquez’s fun illustrations and sweet writing style make this unique family story a must-have.

Blankies book
#33
Blankies
Written and illustrated by Carol Thompson
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-2

Every baby's blankie or cuddly is different, but they are all just as special! Find out what makes them unique, and why babies love them. With a high emotional content reflecting a child's own life and experiences, this is perfect for sharing during a special quiet time.

The Skin You Live in book
#34
The Skin You Live in
Written by Michael Tyler, David Lee Csicsko and illustrated by David Lee Csicsko
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

With the ease and simplicity of a nursery rhyme, this lively story delivers an important message of social acceptance to young readers. Themes associated with child development and social harmony, such as friendship, acceptance, self-esteem, and diversity are promoted in simple and straightforward prose. Vivid illustrations of children's activities for all cultures, such as swimming in the ocean, hugging, catching butterflies, and eating birthday cake are also provided. This delightful picturebook offers a wonderful venue through which parents and teachers can discuss important social concepts with their children.

All Kinds of Children book
#35
All Kinds of Children
Written by Norma Simon and illustrated by Diane Paterson
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

The author of All Kinds of Families presents the things that all children over the world have in common, including their need for food, clothes, people to love them, and the opportunity to play.

Dear Dragon book
#36
Dear Dragon
Written by Josh Funk and illustrated by Rodolfo Montalvo
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

A sweet and clever friendship story in rhyme, about looking past physical differences to appreciate the person (or dragon) underneath. George and Blaise are pen pals, and they write letters to each other about everything: their pets, birthdays, favorite sports, and science fair projects. There’s just one thing that the two friends don’t know: George is a human, while Blaise is a dragon! What will happen when these pen pals finally meet face-to-face?

My New Friend book
#37
My New Friend
Written and illustrated by Sterling Childrens
picture book
Recommend Ages: 1-3

Can a kitten and a parrot be friends? Meet some cute—and unlikely—animal pals! Friends come in all diferent shapes, sizes, and colors, and these animals are learning to befriend creatures that don’t quite look like them. With adorable photographs and clever, humorous text, this book helps children learn to embrace diversity.

The Great Big Book of Families book
#38
The Great Big Book of Families
Written by Mary Hoffman and illustrated by Ros Asquith
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-8

This fun and fascinating treasury features all kinds of families and their lives together. Each spread showcases one aspect of home life-from houses and holidays, to schools and pets, to feelings and family trees. Ros Asquith’s humorous illustrations perfectly complement a charming text from the acclaimed Mary Hoffman; kids will love poring over these pages again and again. A celebration of the diverse fabric of kith and kin the world over, The Great Big Book of Families is a great big treat for every family to share.

To Be a Kid book
#39
To Be a Kid
Written and illustrated by John D Ivanko, Maya Ajmera
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-3

Text and photographs show children from various countries in their daily activities.

Global Baby Girls book
#40
Global Baby Girls
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-3

Pictures and text celebrate girls from around the world.

Global Baby Boys book
#41
Global Baby Boys
Written and illustrated by Maya Ajmera
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-3

A book featuring photographs of boys from all around the world celebrates global diversity.

American Babies book
#42
American Babies
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-3

Presents pictures of babies from across the country in a celebration of the American spirit. On board pages.

F Is for Flag book
#43
F Is for Flag
Written by Wendy Lewison and illustrated by Barbara Duke
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-5

June 14 is Flag Day, but with so many American flags proudly displayed, every day seems like Flag Day. Perfect for reading together with a young child, F Is for Flag shows in simple terms how one flag can mean many things: a symbol of unity, a sign of welcome, and a reminder that-in good times and in bad-everyone in our country is part of one great big family.

Hey Black Child book
#44
Hey Black Child
Written by Useni Eugene Perkins and illustrated by Bryan Collier
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Six-time Coretta Scott King Award winner and four-time Caldecott Honor recipient Bryan Collier brings this classic, inspirational poem to life, written by poet Useni Eugene Perkins Hey black child,Do you know who you are?Who really are? Do you know you can beWhat you want to beIf you try to beWhat you can be? This lyrical, empowering poem celebrates black children and seeks to inspire all young people to dream big and achieve their goals.

Pretty book
#45
Pretty
Written by Justin Sayre
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 10-14

Pretty isn't everything! Trapped by the limitations of her high-school adjective, the realities of her mother's alcohol addiction, and a racially fraught America, Sophie's perspective on what being pretty really means changes drastically in the second adjective-busting novel by the author of Husky, Justin Sayre. Set three months after Husky'sconclusion and narrated by Sophie, Davis's best friend, Sayre details the private and public life of someone saddled with the adjective of pretty. Confident, stylish, and easygoing at school, Sophie is struggling in her home life. Stepping in to help as her mother's addiction spirals out of control, Sophie's aunt teaches the biracial Sophie new lessons about her heritage. While helping to heal the wounds inflicted by alcoholism, Sophie's renewed sense of self challenges her perception of place in the affluent, "liberal" neighborhood of Park Slope where she lives.a Set against the backgrounds of Brooklyn and Harlem, Sayre challenges readers to confront superficial assumptions about race and beauty and breathes new life into the cannon of middle-grade realistic fiction.

Strega Nona's Gift book
#46
Strega Nona's Gift
Written and illustrated by Tomie dePaola
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

In Strega Nona’s village, the holiday season is a time of celebrations – and nothing says celebration like a feast! All the kitchens are bustling from the Feast of San Nicola, when the children choose the food, to the Feast of Epiphany, when someone gets to be king or queen for the day. Even the animals share in the holiday spirit, and when Big Anthony smells the delicious treats Strega Nona is cooking for them, he decides that just a taste couldn’t hurt, right? Wrong! Big Anthony gets his just desserts, while Strega Nona surprises everyone with a special gift. Starring two of Tomie dePaola’s best-loved characters, this funny story features beautiful art, introduces young readers to Italian holiday traditions, and lands Big Anthony in yet another silly predicament that will delight fans young and old.

The Tiger and the Wise Man book
#47
The Tiger and the Wise Man
Written by Andrew Fusek Peters and illustrated by Diana Mayo
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-7

A wise man takes a survey from the forest creatures to prove that he should not be eaten by the tricky tiger, but his plan backfires until a jackal comes along.

Look at Baby's House! book
#48
Look at Baby's House!
Written and illustrated by Peter Linenthal
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-2

Look! The sun is rising at baby?s house. In this delightful follow-up to Look, Look! and Look at the Animals!, a baby?s day unfolds. Bold, blackand- white illustrations and a warm, simple text are perfect for sharing with little ones just beginning to look and learn. An ideal shower gift!

Global Baby Bedtimes book
#49
Global Baby Bedtimes
Written and illustrated by Maya Ajmera
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-3

In pictures and simple text, babies in different countries and cultures go through the same rituals at bedtime.

Global Babies book
#50
Global Babies
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-3

Presents photographs of babies from all over the world in their native costume and describes how all babies are special. On board pages.

Have a suggestion for a book to add to this list? Send an email to [email protected] with your book and list suggestion.