Each week while most students are out of school due to COVID-19, HRC Foundation's Welcoming Schools will offer a book and a related activity adapted from our teacher lesson plans for parents to use with children at home. Our featured books will focus on Welcoming Schools themes: embracing all families, being an ally and respecting differences inclusive of LGBTQ identities. Don’t have the book? Don’t worry! We will provide a link to online readings to each book.

Week 1:

Book: The Family Book by Todd Parr

The Family Book celebrates the many different ways to be a family. Whether you have two moms or two dads, a big family or a small family, a clean family or a messy one, Parr assures kids that no matter what kind of family you have, every family is special in its own unique way. For those who don’t have the book at home, not to worry -- you can use this video of Parr reading the book aloud. We encourage you to interact with your children as you read together. Pause on different pages to talk with your child about what they are seeing. 

  • Do you know of any families where they have different skin tones (though maybe not green, yellow or purple as in the book)? 
  • Do you know what a step-mom is or what adoption is? 
  • Do some families really look like their pets? 

Activity: Draw Your Family Todd Parr Style

  • Take a look at the illustrations in the book and notice how they are very simple yet expressive -- most people have round faces with many different hairstyles drawn with only a few lines -- straight, curly, long, wavy. Notice that the bodies are also drawn with only a few lines -- short or tall, smaller or bigger. Todd Parr; The Family Book
  • Have your child draw your family -- including any pets or important stuffies -- using crayons, colored pencils or markers, encouraging them to use wackadoodle colors as Todd Parr does in his book! 
  • Proudly display on your fridge! And share with HRC on social media! Tag @HRC on Twitter and @HumanRightsCampaign on Instagram

To find the Welcoming Schools lesson plan featuring The Family Book, check out Welcoming Schools family lessons. To find more great books about families, check out these family book lists.

HRC Foundation's Welcoming Schools is the nation's premier professional development program providing training and resources such as book lists and lesson plans to elementary school educators to embrace all families, create LGBTQ and gender-inclusive schools, prevent bias-based bullying, and support transgender and non-binary students.


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