As a former teacher, I love books and recognize the importance of reading to babies. The sooner you can expose children to books and reading, the better their grasp of literary skills will be. It is also important to me for my children to see themselves reflected on the pages they read so this post is dedicated to our favorite books with young, brown characters. We personally own all of the books below (some were gifts and others we purchased) and have had them in our library since Goose was an infant. Here are my favorite books for brown babies:
Please, Baby, Please (Classic Board Books) by Spike Lee and Tonya Lewis Lee
This book takes us through a busy day in the life of a toddler, from waking up too early, making some messes, and getting a sweet goodnight kiss. The little girl can seem a little mischievous in parts, but we use those opportunities to discuss making good choices. (Should we put cereal on our head? No way!)
Whose Toes are Those? by Jabari Asim
Whose Knees are These? by Jabari Asim
Both of these books are a fun way to introduce body parts to babies. They both have cute little rhymes, really colorful pictures, and are perfect for tickling toes or knees. Goose loves the end of each book when they unfold into full length pictures of the kids.
Girl of Mine by Jabari Asim
My favorite thing about this book is that it’s written for a father to read with his daughter. My heart absolutely melts when Goose picks this at night and my husband reads it to her. There’s also a lullaby within this book so be sure to sing that part with your little one. Just a really precious bedtime book.
I Love My Hair! by Natasha Anastasia Tarpley
This is a sweet story about a little girl named Keyana and all of the different ways her mom can style her hair. I think it’s great for teaching hair care, self-love, and appreciation of your unique beauty. I know that I personally had difficulty accepting my hair as a child so I read this book to my girls as a reminder that their hair is beautiful just the way it is.
I Got the Rhythm by Connie Schofield-Morrison
A little girl goes to the park with her mom and they take in all of the different sights and sounds around them. Goose is very into music and dancing so she loves the interactive aspect of this book. It incorporates movement on every page and is very catchy!
Lola Reads to Leo by Anna McQuinn
This actually comes from a series about a girl named Lola who really loves books. We used this specific story to prepare Goose for the arrival of Belly. It goes through the process of her mom being pregnant and getting all of the baby stuff ready to how their life changes once her baby brother is born. I think it gave Goose a better idea of what to expect having a baby sister.
The Colors of Us by Karen Katz
This is Goose’s current favorite book. We read it every. single. day. and she has all of the pages memorized. It’s about a little girl named Lena who went on a walk with her mom through their neighborhood. They talk about how everyone they see is a different shade of brown and how beautiful each color is. It also relates each brown to a different type of food so don’t read this hungry!
None of these books are exclusively for brown babies, most of them don’t even have a direct relationship to the skin colors of the characters. We read many types of books in our home, but I selected these because I like that my kids will be able to identify with the characters they see. Whether these are for your own children or gifts for a friend, they are sure to enjoy and cherish them like ours have.
Check them out and let me know what you think!
What books would you add to this list?