talking to your kids about race
The following list contains tips and resources compiled by the clinical providers at WFP to help you and your family discuss race and current events happening in our community and country. Please note that these resources are offered by Westhampton Family Psychologists, P.C. as a courtesy to our patient’ families, and the links provided here do not constitute an endorsement by WFP of the platforms on which resources are found or of any further reading sources that may be recommended at the end of these sites.
WFP’s educational consultant, Rachel C. Gladstone, M.Ed., M.S. Counseling, recommends that parents ask their children questions to assess their child’s/children’s understanding and base knowledge prior to sharing any information with them. This will help parents structure the conversation in a way that is most appropriate to their child(ren). Similarly, parents should consider the age of the child to make sure the information and books that they are sharing are age-appropriate. Finally, giving children an opportunity to ask questions following any discussion is important. Parents must do their best to be honest with their children, even when the truth is hard. This may bring up big feelings for both children and parents, and that is okay! Parents can validate their children’s feelings and actions steps.
podcasts and videos
- Kojo for Kids: Jason Reynolds Talks About Racism and the Protests: best-selling author, Jason Reynolds joins Kojo for Kids to talk about what has led to the tensions we’ve seen recently, and why racism persists and what we can do to build a less racist society.
- CNN and “Sesame Street” Town Hall Addressing Racism: The 60-minute special “Coming Together: Standing Up to Racism” talks to kids about racism and the recent protests, while also explaining how they can embrace diversity and be more empathetic and understanding.
- Fare of the Free Child podcast
- PBS’s Teaching Your Child About Black History Month
- The Conscious Kid: follow them on Instagram and consider signing up for their Patreon
- I Am Alfonso Jones, written by Tony Medina, illustrated by Stacey Robinson and John Jennings; grades 6–12
- Something Happened in Our Town, written by Marianne Celano, Marietta Collins, and Ann Hazzard, illustrated by Jennifer Zivoin
- The Hate U Give, written by Angie Thomas; ages 13 and up
- How It Went Down, written by Kekla Magoon; ages 14 and up
- All American Boys, written by Jason Reynolds, Brendan Kiely; ages 12 and up (Haunting tale)
- We Need Diverse Books: Resources for Race, Equity, Anti-Racism, and Inclusion
- EmbraceRace: Fantastic Read-Aloud Books for Raising a Brave Generation
- Common Sense Media: Coretta Scott King Book Award Winners
- Books for Littles: Anti-Racism For Kids 101: Starting To Talk About Race
- The Best Children’s Books: Books for Teaching Tolerance and Diversity
- Here Wee Read: So You Want to Talk About Race
- New York Times: These Books Can Help You Explain Racism and Protest To Your Kids (paywall)
- New York Times: Children’s Books that Tackle Race and Ethnicity (paywall)
We hope that the resources provided below will help parents identity action steps and execute meaningful discussions with their child(ren) regarding race and social justice.