The Children's Place logo

Black History Month Book List

3 Books for Black History Month

Children's Books Celebrating Black History and Culture

100+ Books for Black History MonthBooks are a great way to explore new ideas with young children and talk about complex topics as a family. They can tell the stories of history in a fun and compelling way, making them an excellent way to commemorate Black History Month with young children.

Rachel Ulrich, one of our Child & Family Therapists, is a passionate curator of children’s literature who compiled a comprehensive list of children’s books that can help families observe Black History Month or enjoy throughout the year. She selected these specifically with the preschool audience in mind, so they are aimed at children ages five and under. We encourage you to pick a few to look up next time you visit the library!

Looking for a few as a starting point? A couple of Rachel’s favorites are Young Gifted and Black by Jamia Wilson and Cool Cuts and Happy Hair by Mechal Rene Roe, which both celebrate Black culture.

History

  • The 1619 Project: Born on the Water by Nikole Hannah-Jones
  • The Other Side by Jacqueline Woodson
  • Show Way by Jacqueline Woodson (The Underground Railroad)
  • This Is the Rope: A Story from the Great Migration by Jacqueline Woodson
  • The Undefeated by Kwame Alexander
  • Papa’s Mark by Gwendolyn Battle-Lavert (obstacles to voting)
  • Unspeakable: The Tulsa Race Massacre by Carole Boston Weatherford and Floyd Cooper
  • The Other Side by Jaqueline Woodson (segregation)
  • Opal Lee and What It Means to Be Free: The True Story of the Grandmother of Juneteenth by Alice Fay Duncan
  • Under the Freedom Tree by Susan VanHecke
  • Memphis, Martin, and the Mountain Top by Alice Faye Duncan (sanitation strike)
  • Sweet Clara and the Freedom Quilt by Deborah Hopkinson
  • The Patchwork Path: A Quilt Map to Freedom by Bettye Stroud
  • Lillian’s Right to Vote by Jonah Winter

Culture

  • The Talk by Alicia D. Williams
  • Joshua’s Masai Mask by Dakri Hru
  • Why Mosquitoes Buzz in People’s Ears: A West African Tale by Verna Aardema
  • Mama Panya’s Pancakes: A Village Tale from Kenya by Mary Chamberlin
  • The Proudest Blue: A Story of Hijab and Family by Ibtihaj Muhammad
  • Mommy’s Khimar by Jamilah Thompkins-Bigelow
  • Red Shoes by Karen English (giving & Ramadan)
  • Me and the Boss: A Story About Mending and Love by Michelle Edwards & April Harrison
  • Just Like a Mama by Alice Faye Duncan (kinship networks)
  • Family Reunion by Chad & Dad Richardson (importance of family)
  • Me and Mama by Cozi A. Cabrera (enjoy the ordinary family moments)
  • Going Down Home with Daddy by Kelly Starling Lyons (importance of ancestors)
  • Thank You Omu! by Oge Mora (community & generosity)

Change Makers

  • Tiny Stitches: The Life of Medical Pioneer Vivien Thomas by Gwendolyn Hooks and Colin Bootman
  • No Small Potatoes: Junius G. Groves and His Kingdom in Kansas by Tonya Bolden and Don Tate
  • Hidden Figures: The True Story of Four Black Women and the Space Race by Margot Lee Shetterly and Laura Freeman
  • Ruth and the Green Book by Calvin Alexander Ramsey and Gwen Strauss
  • Voice of Freedom: Fannie Lou Hamer: The Spirit of the Civil Rights Movement by Carole Boston Weatherford and Ekua Holmes
  • Henry’s Freedom Box: A True Story From the Underground Railroad by Ellen Levine
  • Stitch by Stitch: Elizabeth Hobbs Keckly Sews Her Way to Freedom by Connie Schofield-Morrison
  • Moses: When Harriet Tubman Led Her People to Freedom by Carole Boston Weatherford
  • Before She was Harriet by Lesa Cline-Ransome
  • The Vast Wonder of the World: Biologist Ernest Everett Just by Melina Mangal and Luisa Uribe
  • Bad News for Outlaws: The Remarkable Life of Bass Reeves, Deputy U.S. Marshal By Vaunda Micheaux Nelson and R. Gregory Christie
  • Twelve Rounds to Glory: The Story of Muhammad Ali by Charles Smith and Bryan Collier
  • Frederick Douglass: The Lion Who Wrote History by Walter Dean Myers
  • Ticktock Banneker’s Clock By Shana Keller and David Gardner
  • Brave Ballerina: The Story of Janet Collins (Who Did It First?) by Michelle Meadows and Ebony Glen
  • Mae Among the Stars by Roda Ahmed and Stasis Burrington
  • The Journey of York: The Unsung Hero of the Lewis and Clark Expedition by Hasan Davis and Alleanna Harris
  • Poet: The Remarkable Story of George Moses Horton by Don Tate
  • ABCs for Girls Like Me by
    Love is Loud: How Diane Nash Led the Civil Rights Movement by Sandra Neil Wallace
  • Whoosh!: Lonnie Johnson’s Super-Soaking Stream of Inventions by Chris Barton

Music

  • A Song for Miles by Tiffany Russell
  • My Two Grandads by Floella Benjamin
  • Libba: The Magnificent Musical Life of Elizabeth Cotten by Laura Veirs
  • Harlem’s Little Blackbird by Renee Watson
  • When Marian Sang: The True Recital of Marian Anderson by Pam Muñoz Ryan
  • Mister and Lady Day: Billie Holiday and the Dog Who Loved Her by Amy Novesky
  • Little Rosetta and the Talking Guitar: The Musical Story of Sister Rosetta Tharpe, the Woman Who Invented Rock and Roll by Charnelle Pinkney Barlow
  • My Family Plays Music by Judy Cox
  • Rock, Rosetta, Rock! Roll, Rosetta, Roll! Presenting Sister Rosetta Tharpe, the Godmother of Rock and Roll by Tonya Bolden
  • Duke Ellington: The Piano Prince and His Orchestra by Andrea Pinkney
  • Strange Fruit: Billie Holiday and the Power of a Protest Song by Gary Golio
  • Trombone Shorty by Troy Andrews
  • RESPECT: Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul by Carole Bonston Weatherford

Affirmations/Self-Esteem/Self-Love

  • All Because You Matter by Tami Charles
  • We Are Here by Tami Charles
  • The Year We Learned to Fly by Jacqueline Woodson
  • I Am Enough by Grace Byers
  • I Believe I Can by Grace Byers
  • I Am Every Good Thing by Derrick Barnes
  • The Day You Begin by Jacqueline Woodson
  • Your Name Is a Song by Jamilah Tompkins-Bigelow
  • You So Black by Theresa tha S.O.N.G.B.I.R.D
  • Big by Vashti Harrison (Self Esteem for big girls)
  • Firebird by Misty Copeland
  • You Come From Greatness by Sara Chinakwe
  • Black Boy Ballad by Martha Sylla Underwood
  • Black Boy Joy by TAhimishia Booker
  • Love Me by Angelot Ndongmo
  • Boy! I Am Loving Me! by Angelot Ndongmo
  • Beautiful Me by Onesha Owens (others see flaws, she sees beauty)
  • Jojo’s Flying Side Kick by Brian Pinkney (test anxiety)
  • Dancing in the Wings by Debbie Allen (empathy)
  • I am Perfectly Designed by Karamo Brown and Jason “Rachel” Brown
  • The King of Kindergarten by Derrick Barnes
  • The Queen of Kindergarten by Derrick Barnes
  • Black Girl Magic by Zahra Bryan
  • Black Girl Rising by Brynne Barnes
  • Be You! by Peter H. Reynolds
  • I Like Me by Karen Beaumont
  • Hey Black Child by Useni Eugene Perkins
  • I Love All of Me by Lorie Anna Grover (board book)
  • Little Black Lives Matter by Khodi Dill
  • Repeat After Me: Big Things to Say Every Day by J. Simon & D.Hill
  • Black Boy, Black Boy by Crown Shepherd
  • I AM…Positive Affirmations for Brown Boys by Ayesha Rodriguez
  • Marvelous Me: Inside and Out by Lisa Bullard
  • You Will Do Great Things by Amerie (mixed race)

Race/Skin Color

  • Black Is a Rainbow Color by Angela Joy
  • Our Skin: A First Conversation About Race by Megan Madison
  • Breathing Makes It Better by Christopher Willard
  • I Can Do Hard Things: Mindful Affirmations for Kids by Gabi Garcia
  • Chocolate Me! by Taye Diggs
  • Mixed Me! By Taye Diggs
  • Skin Like Mine by LaTashia M. Perry
  • Sulwe by Lupita Nyong’o
  • The Colors of Us by Karen Katz
  • The Skin You Live In by Michael Tyler

Hair

  • Cool Cuts (Happy Hair Series) by Mechal Rene Roe
  • Happy Hair by Mechal Rene Roe
  • Hair Love by Matthew A Cherry
  • Don’t Touch My Hair by Sharee Miller
  • Curls by Ruth Forman
  • Glow by Ruth Forman
  • I Love My Haircut! by Natasha Anastasia Tarpley
  • Zara’s Wash Day by Zenda M Walker
  • My Hair is Poofy & That’s Okay by Nikkolas Smith
  • Marisol’s Hair by India Kelvonia
  • MyLuv’s Special Hair by Nyoki Harrison
  • My Hair is Beautiful…Beacause it’s Mine by Paula Dejoie
  • Hair, It’s a Family Affair by Mylo Freeman
  • Boonoonoonous Hair by Olive Senior
  • Little Girl Brown, Where’s Your Crown? by Caedence Baylee (written by a 7 yr old)
  • My Hair is a Garden by Cozbi A. Cabera
  • Crown: An Ode to the Fresh Cut by Derrick Barnes
  • Glonda’s Hair by Chistopher & Kaydence Clark
  • Penny and the Magic Puffballs by Alonda Williams
  • Big Hair, Don’t Care by Crystal Swain-Bates
  • I Love My Hair! by Natasha Anastasia Tarpley
  • Bedtime Bonnet by Nancy Redd
  • Bippity Bop Barbershop by Natasha Anastasia Tarpley
  • My Fade is Fresh by Shauntay Grant

Social Justice/Advocacy/Community

  • A is for Activist by Innosanto Nagara
  • Counting on Community by Innosanto Nagara
  • Antiracist Baby Board Book by Ibram X. Kendi
  • Woke Baby by Mahogany L. Browne
  • Ava Saves the Day by Breyanna Grays, M.D. (medical advocacy & situational awareness)
  • Why Am I Me? by Paige Britt (identity & antiracism)
  • Looking Like Me by Walter Dean Myers (uniqueness & antibias)
  • The Bear’s Garden by Marcie Colleen
  • Love is Powerful by Heather Dean Brewer
  • That Flag by Tameka Fryer Brown
  • Goodnight Racism by Ibram X. Kendi

Mental Health

  • Cape by Kevin Johnson (Grief & Loss)
  • Each Kindness by Jacqueline Woodson (antibullying)
  • I Am Okay To Feel by Karamo Brown (General emotions)
  • My Cold Plum Lemon Pie Bluesy Mood by Tameka Fryer Brown
  • Shady Baby Feels by Gabrielle Union and Dwayne Union
  • Looking for Happy by Ty Chapman (finding joy in every day)
  • Catching Thoughts by Bonnie Clark (Anxiety)
  • Ruby Finds A Worry by Tom Percival (anxiety)
  • Lily’s Cat Mask by Julie Fortenberry (school anxiety)
  • Hurry Up!: A Book About Slowing Down by Katie Dopirak (Mindfulness)
  • Waiting on Mr. Sloth by Katy Hudson
  • Mindful Mr. Sloth by Katy Hudson
  • Jabari Jumps by Gaia Cornwall (Anxiety)
  • Jabari Tries by Gaia Cornwall (Determination, Not Giving Up)
  • Allie All Along by Sarah Lynne Reul (Anger)
  • The Quickest Kid in Clarksville by Pat Zietlow Miller (perseverance & team work)
  • Share Some Kindness, Bring Some Light by Apryl Stott (kindness & antibias)
  • The Honest-To Goodness Truth by Patricia C. McKissack (honesty & tactfulness)
  • Something Beautiful by Sharon Dennis Wyeth (empowerment & finding happiness)
  • Monster Trouble by Lane Frederickson (trouble sleeping)
  • Here and Now by Julia Denos (Mindfulness, Connection/Community)
  • Rolling into Peace (Speaking in Green) by Erica D Babino (mediation & conflict resolution)
  • Sister Girl and the Training Wheels by Nicole Fenner (Resilience, Problem Solving)
  • Homemade Love by Bell Hooks (mistakes)
  • My Brother Charlie by Holly Robinson & Ryan Elizabeth Peete (autism)
  • Julian Is A Mermaid by Jessica Love (LGBTQIA+, Being Yourself)
  • When Aiden Became A Brother by Kyle Lukoff (LGBTQIA+)

Representation/Black Lead Character(s)

  • Baby Dance by Ann Taylor
  • Another by Christian Robinson (wordless)
  • The Patchwork Prince by Baptiste Paul
  • Bye-Bye Binky by Maria Van Lieshout
  • Peekaboo Morning by Rachel Isadora
  • Please, Baby, Please by Spike Lee & Tonya Lewis Lee
  • Girl of MINE by Jabari Asim
  • I Can Do It Too! By Karen Baicker
  • Carmin Cares by Karen Kilpatrick
  • Princess Truly: I Am Truly by Kelly Greenawalt
  • Lola Reads Series by Anna Mcquinn
  • When Grandma Gives You A Lemon Tree by Jamie L. B. Deenihan
  • A Dress with Pockets by Lily Murray
  • Grandma Lena’s Big Ol’Turnip by Denia Hester (retelling of Russian Fairytale)
  • The Hello, Goodbye Window by Norton Juster
  • This is Ruby by Sara O’Leary
  • Love Is by Diane Adams
  • I am Actually a Penguin by Sean Taylor
  • Just Us Women by Jeannette Caines
  • Josie’s Lost Tooth by Jennifer K. Mann
  • I Got the Rhythm by Connie Schofield-Morrison
  • Flower Garden by Eve Bunting
  • City Green by DyAnne DiSalvo-Ryan
  • Jayden’s Secret Ingredient by Melina Mangal
  • Jayden’s Impossible Garden by Melina Mangal
  • City Shapes by Diana Murray
  • Going Up! by Sherry J. Lee
  • Pecan Pie Baby by Jacqueline Woodson (getting a new sibling)
  • Ambitious Girl by Meena Harris
  • The Old Truck by Jarrett Pumphrey
  • Fly by Brittany J. Thurman
  • Isobel Adds It Up by Kristy Everington
  • The Cot in the Living Room by Hilda Eunice Burgos (empathy)
  • Not Quite Snow White by Ashley Franklin
  • Our Table by Peter H. Reynolds (Importance of family & meals)
  • Izzy Gizmo by Pip Jones (don’t give up)
  • Saturday by Oge Mora (managing disappointment)
  • The Nutcracker in Harlem by T. E. McMorrow
  • Reading Beauty by Deborah Underwood
  • Nana Akua Goes to School by Tricia Elam Walker
  • Raising Dragons by Jerdine Nolen
  • Kenya’s Art by Linda Trice (recycle, creativity)
  • Boxitects by Kim Smith (cooperation, friendship)
  • I Had A Favorite Dress by Boni Ashburn (creativity, problem solving)
  • Ada Twist, Scientist by Andrea Beaty
  • Bunheads by Misty Copeland (courage)
  • The Mermaid Princesses: A Sister Tale by Maya Cameron-Gordon
  • These Hands by Hope Lynn Price
  • Do Not Bring Your Dragon to the Library by Julie Gassman
  • M is for Melanin by Tiffany Rose
  • Help Wanted, Must Love Books by Janet Sumner Johnson
  • The New Small Person by Lauren Child (new sibling)
  • Rain Feet by Angela Johnson
  • Mama Bird, Baby Bird by Angela Johnson
  • Joshua’s Night Whispers by Angela Johnson
  • Joshua by the Sea by Angela Johnson
  • The Word Collector by Peter H. Reynolds
  • The Carpenter by Bruna Barros (wordless)
  • Brothers of the Knight by Debbie Allen
  • Murfaro’s Beautiful Daughters by John Steptoe (Cinderella)
  • The Paperboy by Dav Pilkey

Share:

Latest News

Teacher making craft with child

Teachers Receive High Accolade

We always knew that our educators were top-notch, but with our recent round of the Classroom Assessment Scoring System (CLASS) scores, we can prove it!