Readers’ Advisory: Social Justice Picture Books for Young Children

A note to visitors of this website: As some of you may already know, I am currently pursuing a Master’s of Library and Information Studies at the University of Alberta’s School of Library and Information Studies. This blog post is part of an assignment for my LIS 503 – Reference Services course. Readers’ advisory is a service often provided by librarians of suggesting books (or other resources) to readers based on criteria such as their age level and preferences for certain genres or topics. My assignment was to pick a book and come up with a read-alike list of ten titles. It’s been a long time since I have explored children’s books, so this was a lot of fun and almost makes me wish I had small children around to read these with. Almost. Anyway, I hope you enjoy.

A is for Activist, written and illustrated by Innosanto Nagara, is an ABC board book that introduces social justice concepts to young readers. Through colourful illustrations and catchy rhymes, the book covers topics such as racism, environmental justice, labour rights, 2SLGBTQ+ struggles, and more.

Here is a read-alike list featuring a selection of other picture and board books about social justice issues, aimed at early childhood readers.

An ABC of Equality, written by Chana Ginelle Ewing; illustrated by Paulina Morgan

All Because You Matter, written by Tami Charles; illustrated by Bryan Collier

Feminist Baby by Loryn Brantz

Love Makes a Family by Sophie Beer

We Are Water Protectors, written by Carole Lindstrom; illustrated by Michaela Goade

All Are Welcome, written by Alexandra Penfold; illustrated by Suzanne Kaufman.

Antiracist Baby, written by Ibram X. Kendi; illustrated by Ashley Lukashevsky

I Am Enough, written by Grace Byers; illustrated by Keturah A. Bobo.

Lovely by Jess Hong

Where Are You From? by Yamile Saied Méndez