Students understand differences from a very early age. It's important that they are guided to appreciate the beauty diversity can bring to their lives. Diversity influences relationships as we grow and express ourselves with people who are different and similar to us. This work is an important foundation for community building, social emotional learning and building relationship based on empathy, respect, love and understanding. This learning goes beyond differences in identity but also diversity of opinion and the understanding that diversity includes the impact of unequal power dynamics, which we need to think critically about. 

DIVERSITY: Social Justice Standards

Diversity 6. Students will express comfort with people who are both similar to and different from them and engage respectfully with all people.

Diversity 7. Students will develop language and knowledge to accurately and respectfully describe how people (including themselves) are both similar to and different from each other and others in their identity groups.

Diversity 8. Students will respectfully express curiosity about the history and lived experiences of others and will exchange ideas and beliefs in an open-minded way.

Diversity 9. Students will respond to diversity by building empathy, respect, understanding and connection.

Diversity 10. Students will examine diversity in social, cultural, political and historical contexts rather than in ways that are superficial or oversimplified.

Inspires discussions about building communities when each person has unique lived experiences. 
Fiction: Lyrical Writing Style, Visualizing, ThemePerspective: Diversity

Deeply moving reminder that wealth is not confined to material things.
Fiction: Sequence, Cause & EffectPerspective: Refugee, Hmong

Shows the strength and determination it required to move to another country.
Fiction: Plot, Metaphors (butterflies & humans migrate)Perspective: Mexican, Immigrant 

Humanize an analysis of setting. Analyze the ways Carmela observes the conditions in her neighborhood and the wishes she dreams about.
Fiction: Cause & Effect, Sequencing, Figurative LanguagePerspective: Child of Immigrants
Describes the beautiful diversity of the modern Native American family w/ important footnotes for teachers and students to understand the cultural significance of each page.
Fiction: Main Idea & Details, Figurative LanguagePerspective: Indigenous

Highlights the seeds of the assimilation process and internalized racism.
Fiction: Cause & Effect, Sequencing, Figurative LanguagePerspective: Chinese, Child of Immigrants
Written in a poetic style, students will learn the intense emotions that can accompany a person living with a disability.
Fiction: Figurative LanguagePerspective: Living with a speech disability

Inspires students to identify their hopes and dreams and practice skills that support their future.
Autobiography: Figurative Language, Cause and Effect, ThemePerspective: Immigrant, Dual Language Speaker, Chicano

This resource helps teachers and parents find books that inspire conversations with children that affirm their lived experiences, encourage a genuine curiosity and love for diversity and inspire them to identify solutions to solve problems in their communities. 

If this is your first time hearing about the Social Justice Standards, learn more here.

Book covers images are from publishers and in the public domain