Teaching Kids About Social Justice & Racism

Together we feel the collective sadness and anger we are experiencing as a nation. The horrific killing of George Floyd at the hands of police has been yet another painful reminder of how very far our country is from being a land of racial justice that lives up to its own ideals of freedom and equality. We stand in solidarity with all those protesting and organizing for the lives, freedom, and protection of BIPOC (Black, Indigenous and People of Color) everywhere.

As educators of young people, we share the honor and responsibility of actively prioritizing anti-racism in our curriculum and teachings. At Oak Meadow, we are working on acknowledging and acting on our need to do more, and do better. We want to support Oak Meadow students and parents in any way possible to help bring forth a better, more just world.

If you are having a difficult time talking to your kids, know that you are not alone. To help get you started, we have compiled a list of resources for talking to your children and educating them about race and injustice, as well as resources that show diverse viewpoints.

Ending inequality and injustice will take much more work and many more voices. We know advocacy and learning takes many forms, and many paths. Whatever path you choose, let’s keep each other moving in the right direction.

It is our hope that these resources will guide you and your family to develop good practices for helping overcome racial injustices.

Foundations in Social Justice

This comprehensive introductory course for parents and teachers gives practical guidance for bringing social justice principles into action. Through a wide variety of illuminating readings, activities, discussions, and reflections, participants will gain a more complex understanding of how a person’s actions impact others.

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How To Talk To Your Kids About Racism:

Where To Find Diverse Books:

  • Booklist from Social Justice Books – Here are more than 60 carefully selected lists of multicultural and social justice books for children, young adults, and educators.
  • Diverse Voices: The 50 Best Culturally Diverse Children’s Books – This list of culturally diverse books to read, savor and recommend is a joyous celebration of the 50 most fabulous books for children of all ages, from The Guardian.
  • 5 Black Children’s Authors and Illustrators You Should Know – Black people are doing great things in all fields though that’s not often the story we hear. Here are some black children’s illustrators and authors to add to your child’s bookshelf.
  • A Diverse Summer Reading List for Kids – These books tackle themes like international adoption, biracial families and cultural history, to name a few. Not all of the authors are minorities, but every book features a protagonist of color that children can point to and say, “That’s me!” (from NPR)
  • 1000 Black Girl Books Database – This resource guide was created in direct response to the multiple requests made by educators, parents and students who were asking for books with black girls as the main characters.
  • Where To Find Diverse Books – This is a compiled list of sites that offer recommendations for diverse titles.

Which Films To Watch As A Family:

In the words of Ralph Ellison, “education is all a matter of building bridges.” We know that education is what unites us, and through a commitment to learning, we all have the opportunity to become better citizens of the world.