From: American Academy Pediatrics

Reading diverse and inclusive books is a wonderful way to allow children to see themselves reflected, learn about other people and their experiences, imagine themselves in another place or time, imagine themselves in another person’s experiences, recognize our similarities, and celebrate differences.

Reading is more than fundamental. It provides the opportunity to teach our children about kindness, compassion, and empathy for others and that diversity of stories matter. All kids should be able to see themselves as the stars of their own stories. As there is not one type of child, there should not be one type of story.

Read on for a sampling of favorite titles collected by pediatricians to help families select and share books with young children. This list was created in collaboration between Reach Out and Read and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) Section on Minority Health, Equity and Inclusion, the Book List Committee of the AAP Council on Early Childhood, and the Reach Out and Read Book Committee.

Birth – 12 MONTHS

I Will Talk to You, Little One by Phyllis E. Gran; illustrated by Tomie dePaola (English & Spanish)

I Love You Like Sunshine by Mariana Glusman, MD; photos by Marta Killner, MD (English & Spanish)

Global Babies by The Global Fund for Children (English & English-Spanish bilingual)

Reach: A Board Book About Curiosity by Elizabeth Verdick and Marjorie Lisovskis

Cradle Me by Debby Slier (English)

Baby Says by John Steptoe (English)

Kiss by Kiss / Ocetowina: A Counting Book for Families by Richard Van Camp (English, Plains Cree)

Toddler 12-36 MONTHS

My Heart Fills with Happiness by Monique Gray Smith; illustrated by Julie Flett (English English-Cree bilingual, English-Ojibwa bilingual, Spanish, French)

My Friends / Mis Amigos by Taro Gomi (English, English-Spanish bilingual)

Jazz Baby by Lisa Wheeler; illustrated by R. Gregory Christie (English)

Bee-bim Bop! by Linda Sue Park; illustrated by Ho Baek Lee (English)

Grandma’s Tiny House: A Counting Story by JaNay Brown-Wood; iIllustrated by Priscilla Burris (English)

Brown Baby Lullaby by Tameka Fryer; illustrated by A.G. Ford. (English with a sprinkling of Spanish)

Please, Baby, Please by Tonya Lewis Lee and Spike Lee; illustrated by Kadir Nelson (English, Spanish)

Welcome to the Party by Gabrielle Union; illustrated by Ashley Evans (English)

Say Hello! by Rachel Isadora (English with a sprinkling of other languages)


Preschool 3-5 YEARS

Be Who You Are! by Todd Parr (English, French)

Round is a Mooncake: A Book of Shapes by Roseanne Thong; iIllustrated by Grace Lin (English)

I Am Enough by Grace Byers; illustrated by Keturah A. Bobo (English)

Hair Love by Matthew A. Cherry; illustrated by Vashti Harrison (English, French)

Marisol McDonald Doesn’t Match by Monica Brown; illustrated by Sara Palacios (English, English-Spanish bilingual)

The Twins’ Blanket by Hyewon Yum (English)

Julian Is a Mermaid by Jessica Love (English, Catalan, Portuguese, Italian, Chinese, Danish, German, Spanish, Finnish, Norwegian, Swedish, French, Japanese, Dutch, Korean)

A Kids Book About Racism by Jelani Memory (English)

And Tango Makes Three by Justin Richardson and Peter Parnell; illustrated by Henry Cole (English, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, Swedish, Czech, French, Polish, Basque)

Just Because by Rebecca Elliott (English, Russian, Ukranian, Polish)

Lubna and Pebble by Wendy Meddour; illustrated by Daniel Egnéus (English)

Mommy’s Khimar by Jamilah Thompkins-Bigelow; illustrated by Ebony Glenn (English)

You Hold Me Up by Monique Gray Smith; illustrated by Danielle Daniel (English, Cree)

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