Story Starters Resources for
New England Revolution Fans
Story Starters equips families and educators with strategies to develop young children’s anti-racist values and ability to disrupt racism in their daily lives. Using picture books as tools, our programs provide support to talk about race and racism and engage in family-centered social justice conversations and actions.
Why is it important for caregivers to talk to kids about race and racism?
We know that racial bias begins early in childhood. At birth babies show no preference for own-race faces, but by 3 months of age they prefer own-race faces. Children ages 3-5 categorize people based on race and express bias based on race.
Children tend to hold racial attitudes that reflect the norms and practices of the communities they are part of. “Without making specific references to the topic of race, it is unlikely that children will understand that ... they should not discriminate against others based on their skin color.”
In other words, during the critical development window of 3-8, trusted adults can have a tremendous impact on children’s racial attitudes and biases by having thoughtful conversations with them.
To help you get started, we are offering one of the strategies we teach in our programming…
Windows & Mirrors
"Mirrors, Windows, and Sliding Glass Doors" by Rudine Sims Bishop
This is the original article in which Dr. Bishop coined the phrase "mirrors & windows" and started a movement for all kids to see themselves reflected in books and learn from the lives of others.
The Windows and Mirrors of Your Child's Bookshelf, Grace Lin, TEDxNatick
Grace Lin is a children's book author/illustrator whose book, “Where the Mountain Meets the Moon,” received the Newbery Book Honor. She shows how the books that are not on your child's bookshelf are just as important as those that are.
To get started download the below booklist and check out the books in your local library!
Here are questions to explore while reading:
Who and what is this story about?
What do you notice about the characters in this book? What do they look like? Where do they live? What’s important to them?
What do the characters in this book have in common with our family? What is different?
Who wrote and illustrated this book? What do you know about them? What do they have in common with the characters? Why do you think they created a story about these characters?