By Katilyn Thomas
Looking for a way to celebrate and honor Pride Month with your young kids? From books with main characters who are LGBTQ or still figuring out their sexual orientations, to stories of straight kids with gay friends or parents, these books portray many aspects of the LGBTQ experience for kids as young as 3. Many of these books have been published within the last few years, a happy indication that more and more families are celebrating diversity in gender and sexual identity.
Here are 10 books honoring Pride Month to read to your kids
A is for Activist by Innosanto Nagara
A is for Activist is an ABC board book written and illustrated for the next generation of progressives: families who want their kids to grow up in a space that is unapologetic about activism, environmental justice, civil rights, LGBTQ rights, and everything else that activists believe in and fight for.
And Tango Makes Three by Justin Richardson and Peter Parnell
In the zoo there are all kinds of animal families. But Tango’s family is not like any of the others.
Albert the Confused Manatee by Christopher Straub
Albert the Confused Manatee is a story about one animal’s quest to figure out what kind of animal he is. With the help of his 15 underwater friends, Albert learns that even though they have differences they also have a lot in common
The Boy with the Rainbow Heart by William Mason
If you are looking for a children’s book that teaches acceptance to any child who may be feeling different, this book is for you! This is a children’s story about a young boy with a rainbow heart who turns the town of Gray into the town of Shine – through love, kindness, and by being himself. It is a book that teaches love and acceptance for all people – no matter what color your heart may shine!
The Boy Who Cried Fabulous by Leslea Newman
The only thing Roger likes better than exploring the world around him is describing it. And Roger describes most things as fabulous! But his parents have a different view. They want Roger to see things the way they do, so they ban “fabulous” from his vocabulary.
Cookies and Cake & The Families We Make by Jennifer L. Egan
Cookies and Cake & The Families We Make is a children’s book about exposure and acceptance of the diverse families that are part of our society: single parents, multicultural parents, two moms, two dads, one of each or even an unrelated guardian. Those families, who may at first seem different are quite similar because what really matters is the love and care they give to their children. The author uses the metaphor of the different cakes and cookies we can bake to help young readers respect, accept and welcome diversity.
Introducing Teddy by Jessica Walton
This sensitively written book about a transgender teddy bear is done with just the right hand to introduce the idea of gender identity and transition to very young kids, for whom less may be more.
Harriet Gets Carried Away by Jessie Sima
In one seamless story, this book introduces an exuberant multiracial girl who has two dads, sends her on a fantastic hot-air balloon journey with penguins, and throws her a rollicking rooftop party.
I Am Jazz by Jessica Herthel and Jazz Jennings
This autobiographical picture book about a transgender child chronicles the story of her life (so far); in her words, “I have a girl brain but a boy body.” This is an excellent choice to jump-start a conversation about gender, identify, compassion, and honesty.
Jacob’s New Dress by Sarah and Ian Hoffman
This cheery book about a confident young boy who feels best when he’s wearing a dress is a terrific way for parents to start a conversation with kids feeling their way through unfamiliar terrain.
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