Jumpstart's Book Recommendation for Native American Heritage Month
In honor of Native American Heritage month, we are lifting up the stories and voices of Indigenous characters and authors! Here are some book recommendations that you can read with children that celebrate Indigenous traditions and experiences:
- My Powerful Hair, written by Carole Lindstrom, illustrated by Steph Littlebird
- In this story, a girl can’t wait for her hair to grow because hair holds so much significance, especially memory, strength, and culture. With your child, recount the different ways hair holds importance to the characters in the book. Are there things in your own lives that similarly hold importance?
- Finding Moose, written by Sue Farrell Holler, illustrated by Jennifer Faria
- Read along to follow a boy and his grandfather through the woods as they come across different animals and plants. Invite your child to take a walk outside and see what they notice. Make a game to see if they can try to walk quietly like the animals in the story.
- Finding My Dance, written by Ria Thundercloud, illustrated by Kalila J. Fuller
- Follow this true story of Ria Thundercloud as she shares her dance journey, including powwows, ballet, tap, and jazz. When Ria dances, it makes her feel better. Ask your child, “What kinds of dances make you feel happy?” Put on some music and try out different dances together.
- Sharice’s Big Voice: A Native Kid Becomes a Congresswoman, written by Sharice Davids and Nancy K. Mays, illustrated by Joshua Mangeshig Pawis-Steckley
- In this autobiography, Sharice Davids never thought she would be in Congress, let alone be one of the first Native American women in Congress. Everyone’s journey looks different, and Sharice used her big voice to be seen and heard. Have your child share some things they can use their big voice for.
- Frybread, written by Kevin Noble Maillard , illustrated by Juana Martinez-Neal
- Read this story about the celebration of fry bread: a symbol of food, family, and tradition. With your child, draw or cut out pictures from newspapers and create a collage of foods that are important to them. Ask them, “Why is this dish special to you?”
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For over 29 years, Jumpstart has been fueled by the core belief that providing high-quality educational opportunities to all young children prepares them for academic and economic success later in life. Jumpstart advances equitable learning outcomes for young children by recruiting and supporting caring adults to deliver high-quality programming and drive systems change through teaching, advocacy, and leadership. Jumpstart has trained more than 60,000 college students and community volunteers, preparing over 140,000 children for kindergarten success. Jumpstart’s program is replicated across the country in 14 states and the District of Columbia. Learn more at jstart.org.