Post submitted by Charles Girard, HRC Welcoming Schools Coordinator
As people head out of town for beach trips and family vacations this summer, families often look for ways to keep children occupied. If you’re looking for a way to keep your children entertained, HRC’s Welcoming Schools has some carefully curated book recommendations just for you.
Families love our list of recommended picture books, which cover a variety of topics such as family diversity, gender and LGBTQ topics. This list includes I Am Jazz, an autobiographical book about HRC Youth Ambassador Jazz Jennings, And Tango Makes Three, about two male penguins that raise a baby together, and Lesléa Newman’s classic Heather Has Two Mommies. If you’re looking for illustrated books, be sure to check out Introducing Teddy. Released this May, Introducing Teddy features a transgender teddy bear who just wishes her human friend would call her Tilly.
Middle Grade Books
If you are looking for a book for a student who prefers more words than pictures, this list is for you. Some of our favorites on this list are Gracefully Grayson, which tells the story of a transgender 12-year-old, Half a World Away, a book following an adopted 11-year-old as his family travels to adopt another child, and The Liberation of Gabriel King, an incredible story about an interracial friendship set in the 1970s American South.
For Educators and Families
If you’re just looking for a title for yourself, we’ve got you covered with suggestions like Diane Ehrensaft’s Gender Born, Gender Made: Raising Healthy Gender-Nonconforming Children, Dignity for All: Safeguarding LGBT Students by Peter DeWitt and The Transgender Child: A Handbook for Families and Professionals by Stephanie Brill and Rachel Pepper.
Whether you’re staying home or going on vacation this summer, most of these books can be found in store, online or in your local public library. If your library or local book store doesn’t carry books about LGBTQ topics, you can always suggest some of these titles to add to the shelves.
HRC Welcoming Schools is a comprehensive approach to creating respectful and supportive elementary schools with resources and professional development to embrace family diversity, create LGBTQ-inclusive schools, prevent bias-based bullying and gender stereotyping, and support transgender and gender-expansive students.