Books are a unique way to connect with your baby from the very beginning. And there’s no shortage of good reading material out there, especially when it comes to promoting important values like kindness and acceptance. Fill your child’s library with books that encourage diversity and inclusion. Your baby’s first literary lesson can be that differences are okay. In fact, they’re what make us special.

Global Babies by The Global Fund for Children
Colorful photos abound in this board book featuring babes from 17 different countries throughout the world. Sneak a peek at the lives, cultures and traditions of families with wee ones far and wide.

Available at amazon.com, $6.95.

Carry Me (Babies Everywhere) by Star Bright Books
It’s rhyme time for babies and tots in this simple story showing young children carried by bicep, blanket, basket, backpack, and more. Beginner book lovers will be fascinated with this collection of photographs depicting young children being carried by doting caregivers.

Available at amazon.com, $6.99.

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Everywhere Babies by Susan Meyers, illustrated by Marla Frazee
This simply written and sweetly illustrated board book shows babies of all origins being cared for in all sorts of ways. Small babies, tall babies, summer and fall babies. One thing they all have in common is that they’re all kissed and fed and rocked to sleep by people who love them.

Available at amazon.com, $6.95.

We Are Family by Patricia Hegarty, illustrated by Ryan Wheatcroft
No matter how your family came to be or what it looks like, your commitment to stick together is what really matters. That’s the focus of this inclusive book for children that showcases fams of different sizes, races, abilities and more.

Available at amazon.com, $11.83.

Baby Talk by Stella Blackstone
A great book for older siblings to read to younger ones, Baby Talk is all about the simple but powerful ways in which we interact with babies. Told with accompanying high-contrast, black and white photos, it's also perfect for developing baby's eyesight.

Available at amazon.com, $6.99.

Say Hello! by Rachel Isadora
Introduce your babe to the sounds of different languages with a glimpse at a diverse neighborhood full of people speaking Spanish, French, Japanese and more. The kid-friendly collage pictures also make for an exciting glimpse of some diverse cultures.

Available at amazon.com, $7.19.

All Are Welcome by Alexandra Penfold, illustrated by Suzanne Kaufman
Watch as a diverse mix of children wearing everything from pigtails and patkas to glasses and hijabs and yarmulkes make their way through school. The illustrations full of young families of all kinds are what make this picture book a feast for little eyes.

Available at amazon.com, $14.06.

Pink and Blue by Ritu Vaishnav, illustrated by Vishnu M Nair
Some people will insist that pink is for girls and blue is for boys. But many of us know that simply isn’t true. Pink and Blue goes well beyond color to break down gender stereotypes and start an early and often dialogue about how boys and girls should question such traditional, nonsensical ideas.

Available at amazon.com, $6.03.

The Name Jar by Yangsook Choi
It’s not easy being the new kid in school, especially when your teachers and classmates can’t pronounce your name. Unhei is suddenly self-conscious of her Korean name and decides to choose a new one. Until her new friends convince her to keep it!

Available at amazon.com, $7.99.

Of Thee I Sing by Barack Obama, illustrated by Loren Long
From George Washington to Georgia O’Keeffe, and from Jackie Robinson to Maya Lin, this piece of U.S. history in a picture book sheds light on the diverse faces, qualities and achievements of thirteen Americans. Perusing its pages is like looking at our country’s own yearbook.

Available at amazon.com, $6.81.

When Charley Met Emma by Amy Webb, illustrated by Merrilee Liddiard
Charley feels different from other children. Sometimes he likes to play with his friends, but other times he prefers to draw by himself. Then he meets Emma, who is also different. She has no hands and uses a wheelchair. Their meeting and interactions can inspire parents to talk to their little ones about disability and kindness and inclusion starting at an early age.

Available at amazon.com, $12.37.

Whitney C. Harris

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