Talking about diversity with kids

Po Bronson writes in Nutureshock (which I blogged about here),

“We all want our children to be unintimidated by differences and have the social skills to integrate in a diverse world.  The question is, do we make it worse, or do we make it better, by calling attention to race?”

The book makes a strong case for talking about race with kids, and this column on Newsweek talks a little bit about why and when to start talking about race with kids.  But for those who are looking for concrete suggestions for the “how” part of the discussion, I think that Julius Lester’s Let’s Talk About Race is a great place to start with elementary-school-age kids.  This picture book is designed to generate discussion.  It asks questions and provides much food for thought about the ways that people are different and the ways that we are the same.

Whether talking about race will help or hurt when it comes to embarrassing situations for parents, I’m not sure.  But as I blogged about regarding my physical difference, I’d rather kids ask questions than learn that questions are taboo when it comes to people who are different.

What are your favorite books for talking about diversity with kids?  Share your recommendations here or let’s connect on Facebook.