As parents, it is our responsibility to raise kids who are prepared to fight for racial justice. It is a daunting task and we all need to find the resources to help us do it right.
One resource we know and love, Embrace Race, is a nonprofit that delivers on its promise to help all parents raise kids who are thoughtful, informed and brave about race. Our Co-Founders Meghan and Brian Fitzgerald have relied on their incredible resources, both in their work at Tinkergarten and in their parenting of three young children.
When we we shared a link to Embrace Race this past June, we also asked for our community to share any resources they have found helpful in their own quest to raise anti-racist children. The Tinkergarten community came through with websites and experts. Here they are, collected and vetted by our Learning team.
This list is by no means exhaustive but it’s a start. Please feel free to comment with any additional resources we should consider. Thank you all for joining us in this essential work.
Author Jelani Memory, a Black entrepreneur and father of six, describes his book as “a clear explanation of what racism is and how to know when you see it.” It’s intended as an introduction for kids to the topic of racism and aims to help them understand how people feel when they experience it. It is so popular, that it’s currently on backorder.
Not My Idea: A Book About Whiteness
Feminist publisher Dottir Press is offering free PDF downloads of this children’s book about a White child’s response to a news report of a White police offer fatally shooting a nonviolent brown person. Written by Anastasia Higginbotham, a journalist with a focus on social justice and the creator of the Ordinary Terrible Things children’s book series, the book aims to help White children and their families learn about White supremacy in order to help dismantle it.
This new board book by Ibram X. Kendi, a leading scholar on race and discriminatory policy, proves it’s never too early to start these critical conversations and helps give parents the language to do so. Bolstered by Ashley Lukashevsky’s delightful illustrations, the book outlines “nine easy steps for building a more equitable world.” Adults can also read Kendi’s New York Times Bestseller How to Be an Anti-Racist.
Websites and Other Digital Resources
The Conscious Kid was founded by parents of color to support “Parenting and Education through a Critical Race Lens.” On their Instagram, which just hit 1 million followers, you’ll find book recommendations and succinct conversations on important topics related to racial justice. Or subscribe to their community via Patreon (membership levels range from $1 to $100 per month) to receive additional resources. If you’re able, you can also assist in their effort to provide rent relief to Black families affected by COVID-19.
Dr. Kira Banks, a Black psychologist, professor, and mother of two, created this YouTube channel to help adults help children better navigate racism and other social issues in order to create a more equitable world. Check out “How to Talk To Kids About Racism,” Dr. Banks's recorded discussion with diversity experts who share knowledge from their careers and parents who share personal stories.
Raising Race Conscious Children
Founded by Sachi Feris, an educator with a focus on social justice, Raising Race Conscious Children supports adults in talking about race with young children with the goal of preparing them to work toward racial justice. Feris contributes regular blog posts, hosts workshops and webinars, offers individual consultations, and has created a digital community where adults can share their own conversations about race with children. Though Feris is White and her blog posts are geared toward helping a White audience address these issues, she routinely invites bloggers of diverse backgrounds to create content for the platform.
Anti-Racism Resources for White People
This comprehensive Google Doc has gone viral since it was published in late May by writer-activists Sarah Sophie Flicker and Alyssa Klein. It begins with a section titled “Resources for White parents to raise anti-racist children” outlining recommended books, articles, and podcasts and Instagram accounts.
Founded by a group of White librarians vowing to confront racism and advocate for diversity and inclusion in children’s and teen literature, this blog is also a great resource for parents. In addition to timely blog posts on topics like White erasure of BIPOC work, the Reading While White directs readers to “kindred spirit” sites like The Brown Bookshelf, outlines other resources, including institutions, books, articles and videos and provides a glossary of key terms like “ally” and “cultural appropriation.”
Racism and Violence: How to Help Kids Handle the News by Child Mind Institute
This recorded Facebook Live event brings together two experts from the Child Mind Institute, an independent national nonprofit that aims to improve the lives of children and families facing mental health and learning disorders. Kenya Hameed, PsyD is a Black clinical neuropsychologist at the Institute’s Learning and Development Center. Jamie Howard, PhD is a White clinical psychologist who leads the Trauma and Resilience Service. Together they discuss supporting children through this difficult time. Find some of their strategies outlined here.
Experts and Influencers
Though Hawthorne’s anti-bias and anti-racism work is focused on workshops for educators, you can follow her on Instagram or Facebook to learn from her perspective as a second-generation teacher and get tips on anti-racist parenting, as well as book recommendations for both kids and adults. You can also receive additional resources by joining her online community of anti-racist educators via Patreon (membership levels range from $5 to $25 per month).
Born in South Korea and raised in Washington, DC, founder Liz Kleinrock is an anti-bias educator and consultant who draws on her experience as a transracial adoptee. In addition to her training services, she provides reading lists for both kids and adults, writes articles for Teaching Tolerance, and maintains an active Instagram presence where she offers additional tips and updates. You can get access to her monthly newsletters, lesson plan, and more by joining her Patreon (membership levels start at $5 per month).
Apron Education and Read Like a Rockstar
LaNesha Tabb and Naomi O’Brien, two Black mothers and educators, have collaborated to create A White Family’s Guide For Talking About Racism and The POC Family’s Guide For Talking About Racism. You can also follow their Instagram accounts for ongoing discussion of racial justice issues and children’s book recommendations.