Top Children’s Books to Celebrate Black History Month

February is Black History Month and it’s the perfect time to talk to children about race, civil rights, and the history of African Americans. How can we teach children about the impact of black history? It starts with reading books!

When selecting books, you will find many options, which may focus on a historical or contemporary perspective. You can pick books that are fiction, non-fiction or just classic reads by African American authors. No matter what type of book you choose, it’s a great opportunity to ‘jumpstart’ conversations with a child in your life.

We’ve compiled a list of just a few of our favorites to get you started!

1. Amazing Grace by Mary Hoffman

Grace loves stories, whether they’re from books, movies, or the kind her grandmother tells. So when she gets a chance to play a part in Peter Pan, she knows exactly who she wants to be and Grace can do or be anything she wants!

2. Nelson Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom by Chris van Wyk and Paddy Bouma

This autobiography offers a glimpse into the mind of a great leader, admired across the globe for his dedication to the struggles against apartheid in South Africa for young readers.

3. This Jazz Man by Karen Ehrhardt

In this jazz tribute, some of the era’s best musicians take center stage. This playful introduction to nine jazz giants will give kids every reason to get up and dance!

4. Something Beautiful by Sharon Dennis Wyeth

A little girl longs to see beyond the scary sights on the sidewalk and the angry scribbling in the halls of her building. When her teacher writes the word beautiful on the blackboard, the girl decides to look for something beautiful in her neighborhood. Her search for “something beautiful” leaves her feeling much happier.

5. The Quilt by Ann Jones

A young girl has a new quilt made from her old crib sheet, curtains, and pajamas. When she sleeps, it comes alive in an exciting dream-adventure.

6. The ABCs of Black History: A Children’s Guide by Craig Thompson

The ABCs celebrates 26 notable greats, past and present, like Booker T. Washington, Fannie Lou Hamer, Malcolm X, and Oprah Winfrey.

Vice President of Education & Research at Jumpstart

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