Kids need to learn about diversity and acceptance. The awareness helps children navigate the outside world and make friends easily – a much relevant requirement in today’s world. There are plenty of good diversity picture books written for the 0 to 5 years age group. Here are some of the best-recommended diversity and inclusion books for your little one.
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Short On Time? Our Top 3 Diversity Picture Books
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Self acceptance and loving one’s origin is the first step to being happy
This book reminds how together we are better and stronger
A perfect book for biracial kids trying to fit in
21 Best Diversity Picture Books (0- 5 years)
Check out these 21 books about diversity, acceptance, inclusion. These book are most suitable for toddlers, preschoolers and kindergarteners.
Dream Big, Little One
This board book showcases 18 extraordinary amazing black women from American history. Heroes, role models, ordinary people with extraordinary work – this book has all.
Targeted to the age group of babies and toddlers, this book has pictures of these amazing women with one line about them.
The visual representation is perfect for kids of color to relate to.
This story is about a small child Sulwe, who has a dark skin color. She wants to have bright skin like others in the family and school.
This one is a heartwarming tale about how Sulwe finally learns to accept herself and realizes her unique beauty.
Age group: Preschool and Kindergarten
We’re Better Together
This adorable picture book celebrates togetherness. There is no plot or storyline. Instead, page after page, it teaches how children can make things better by working together – be it playing, making music, cleaning, etc.
The message of diversity is presented throughout the book. There are pictures of both genders, people from different ethnic backgrounds, a child in a wheelchair, another wearing hearing aids, etc.
The cover image is a true representation of what is inside. A good book for toddlers, preschoolers, and kindergarteners.
The Proudest Blue
This charming story is about two girls starting a new school year. They are ready with backpacks and supplies. And the elder sister wearing a hijab to school for the first time.
The story is narrated from the younger sister’s point of view.
A good book for non-hijab families to get familiarized and appreciate the beauty in cultural differences.
Same, Same But Different
Two boys living in two different countries are pen pals. Elliot is from the USA and Kailash lives in India.
However, they soon learn about the many similarities they share- both have pets, climb trees – amongst other things.
It is a book promoting ethnic harmony and showcasing similarities in diversity.
Babies everywhere in the world are loved, kissed, fed, and cared for by their families. The text is rhyming and repetitive, making it a perfect read before bedtime.
A wide variety of families are represented in the book – multi-racial, single parent, same-parents, and much more.
Use this book for introducing diversity gently to the babies.
Just Ask!: Be Different, Be Brave, Be You
This book is written by United States Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor. Using her experience of being a child with diabetes, Sonia writes about kids with having different abilities and challenges.
The analogy of different plants in a garden together making it beautiful is relatable by kids.
What If We Were All The Same!
This book celebrates the difference between physical attributes – hair color, skin color, heights, disability.
A fun rhyming book with colorful illustrations highlighting how our differences make us unique. A conversation starter with young kids.
The Day You Begin
Everyone feels like an outsider at some point. We need to just move forward bravely. A good book to read to and prepare kids for the new school year.
However different we are from others, once we start sharing our stories, familiarity grows.
The illustrations of the book are lovely and showcase different races.
The World Needs More Purple People
This one is a beautifully illustrated picture book about diversity. Find out how to become a purple person in this fun read-aloud.
The moral of the story is about having an open mind, empathy, and embracing differences in others.
The book is suitable for age 3 years and above.
Different Like Me
Go along on an adventure with a diverse group of kids, as they find out how similar they are despite the differences. Some use wheelchairs, some glasses, while others have different hair, different skin colors.
But everyone cries when hurt and jumps with joy when happy. A good book to read to your toddler about how every child is the same inside.
A Rainbow of Friends Coloring Book
This one is a multicultural coloring book for kids. It features a beautiful poem about how the differences amongst all form a beautiful rainbow of friends.
A good book to gently start a conversation with your child about being kind and accepting towards all.
Giraffes Can’t Sing
The protagonist, a Giraffe, is bullied by other animals because he looks so different. He is tool tall with a long neck and weird ears.
One night he gathers his courage and decides to sing. All the other animals are amazed by his voice. His weird long neck helps him produce a beautiful sound.
This book leaves a beautiful message about everyone being amazing in their own different ways. A good read-aloud for preschool and kindergarten.
Different is NOT Bad
Meet Dinosaur Steve and his best friends – dragon Diggory Doo, and unicorn Dazzle D. They are always learning different things.
The story is fun and light hearted. Colorful illustrations make this picture book a fun read. This book teaches kids to love, value and respect each other despite being different.
A Color of His Own
This one is a charming story about a chameleon searching for its identity – its color. It is unhappy and wants to remain in one color forever.
However, soon it meets other chameleons. Together as they travel together, the chameleon realizes that being together is more important than having a color of its own.
Let your kid learn how to be compassionate and kind with Diversity Ninja in this book. Diversity Ninja teaches children what to do when someone is sitting alone or when a child is getting bullied.
The illustrations are appealing for small kids. Check out the entire series of Ninja Life hacks books.
Big Dog . . . Little Dog
Fred and Ted are two dogs who are best friends. However, they are opposite in every way.
This one is a cute story about how these two friends solve a small problem together, with the help of a bird.
The text flows rhythmically making this picture book a fun read-aloud. The book delivers the message about how people with differences can be good friends.
This book teaches kids about self-acceptance. Featuring multicultural children on every page, it emphasizes how it is important to love ourselves and embrace individual uniqueness.
No matter where one is from, or what is the background, one needs to be proud of what he or she is.
This beautifully illustrated picture book is suitable for 1 to 5 years.
What Does It Mean to Be American
Use this book as a conversation starter on what it means to be an American. Behind the fireworks, fast food, etc America is famous for, the underlying message is about everyone being equal.
A lovely book teaching kids how it is the land of acceptance and having the freedom to choose.
The pictures are adorable. With only one or two lines on each page, this one is suitable for toddlers and above.
This one is a charming tale about a little girl Simone, who is multiracial. She is confused looking at people of different colors in her family and wants to know where she belongs to.
The story ends with the child deciding her skin color – an altogether new one!
An adorable and positive story about a child trying to fit in and finding her own identity. The pictures are a work of art and compliment the story well.
Chocolate Milk, Por Favor: Celebrating Diversity with Empathy
Gabe, a new child in a school, does not speak much English. So he is conscious and intimated.
The book narrates how another child Johnny – who initially was prejudiced about the differences, learns to be more empathetic.
The book scores a point for presenting the viewpoint of Johnny. It emphasizes that prejudices exist deep inside society, and with little effort, we can overcome them.
That’s all! We are hoping you found something you would like to read with your little one.
Also, check out the list of multicultural books for kindergarteners here.
Explore other books for toddlers, preschoolers, kindergarteners in our website.