3 Must-Read Children’s Books About Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

By on Jan 14, 2015 | 1 comment

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. is front and center in the media lately due to the Golden Globe nominated film Selma. The film covers the push for voting rights by activists in Selma, Alabama and the three-month period leading up to the infamous Bloody Sunday march in 1965. Selma steps away from the myth of Dr. King and humanizes him in a way we’ve never seen before. The film not only depicts Dr. King as the powerful speaker and organizer, but also illustrates his vulnerability, fears and imperfections. This powerful film is a must-see, not only because it gives viewers a deeper look into what motivated Dr. King, but also because it sheds some much-needed light on other important people in the movement like Diane Nash, Rev. C.T. Vivian, Rev. Hosea Williams, Andrew Young, Ralph Abernathy, Amelia Boynton, and more. A group of African-American businesspeople have come together to donate tickets for 7th, 8th, and 9th grades across the country to see the film for free, but due to some violent scenes Selma may not be suitable for younger children. Still, everyone (especially our Brown Boy Geniuses) should know about Dr. King’s life and achievements. So, here are 5 must-read children’s books about Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Martin’s Big Words: The Life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. by Doreen Rappaport   Martin’s Big Words is a beautifully illustrated children’s book that tells the story of Dr. King’s life. Doreen Rappaport mixes Dr. King’s iconic words with the compelling story of his life. Hailed as the Best Illustrated Children’s Book by the New York Times in 2001, Martin’s Big Words is a wonderful book for any child. Get it on Amazon here. Who Was Martin Luther King, Jr.? by Bonnie Bader   Who Was Martin Luther King, Jr. is a part of the popular Who Was series, which teaches kids about historical figures. In this book, kids learn basic, but interesting, tidbits about Dr. King, like the fact he was only 25 when he helped organize the Montgomery Bus Boycott. How cool is THAT? Get it on Amazon here. I Have A Dream illustrated by Kadir Nelson I Have A Dream uses Dr. King’s own moving words from the 1963 March on Washington as the text for this magnificently drawn book, which features beautiful portraits of Dr. King, marchers, and some of the Washington D.C. monuments. I Have A Dream is a wonderful book to add to your collection and read year after year. Get it on Amazon here. Do you have a favorite children’s book about Dr. King? Leave the name of the book in the comments section below!  Related Post You HAVE To See This Trailer For ‘Raising Dion,... How Do You Encourage Your #BrownBoyGenius to Read? 7 Picture Books to Read With Little Brown Boys Book Review + Giveaway: ‘I Want to Be An...

Book Review + Giveaway: ‘I Want to Be An Athlete & Entrepreneur’

By on Nov 29, 2014 | 11 comments

So this is exciting, and a super long time coming. A few months ago Garrett Carter reached out to me after I posted the list of 35 books Brown boys will love, and asked if I’d review his book + give away a few copies. Of course, I said yes, then proceeded to sit on it–for months. But the time has come. The holiday season has officially begun, and what better way to kick it off than with our first giveaway? But first…the review… I Want to Be an Athlete and Entrepreneur is a cute kid’s book by Garrett Carter. Garrett is a middle school language arts teacher in Ohio who loves to mentor and tutor kids. He also loves to help raise awareness about careers, goal setting, and dreams, a theme that’s very evident in all of his books. I Want to Be an Athlete and Entrepreneur is the second book in the Coby series, and according to the website, “Coby is a young African American boy who is passionate about playing sports. In ‘Coby’s Athlete and Career Series,’ Coby discovers that, in addition being an athlete, he has many other talents and dreams!” In I Want to Be an Athlete and Entrepreneur, Coby declares that he wants to be a professional athlete when he grows up, but when his mother tells him he should be prepared to do more than one thing in life, Coby thinks about what else he’d like to be. After remembering he ran a successful punch stand the previous summer, Coby decides he also wants to be an entrepreneur when he’s older. He also manages to encourage his little sister Lainey along the way. While I Want to Be an Athlete and Entrepreneur is a wonderful story on its own, the book also includes a page for kids to figure out their own “game plan” and jot down their hobbies and goals for the future. You can read more about the book and the series on Garrett’s website: here. Now, for the fun part! Garrett was kind enough to gift 3 copies to giveaway to #BrownBoyGenius readers, so here’s what you need to do to win a free book: –>Sign into the PunchTab box & follow the instructions + leave a comment below naming your favorite children’s book featuring a Brown boy. That’s it! The giveaway will be open until Midnight, Dec. 2nd.  The giveaway is closed. btw: If you don’t want to enter the giveaway & just want to buy the book, grab it on Amazon: here. Related Post OMG: Maya Angelou & Jean-Michel Basquiat Wrot... 3 Must-Read Children’s Books About Dr. Martin Lu... 7 Picture Books to Read With Little Brown Boys How Do You Encourage Your #BrownBoyGenius to...

35 Books Boys Will LOVE!

By on Jul 31, 2014 | 5 comments

When I was a middle school English teacher, I realized that getting some boys to read was like pushing a gigantic bolder uphill. I could do it, but I’d be tired and worn out in the end. Then it hit me, boys—like everybody else—will read books as long as they’re interesting and relatable. Duh! Too often the books our boys are asked to read in school have nothing to do with their lives, or are just downright boring. Books about kids on farms? Psh! Novels about kids in 18th Century America? Uh, NO! Books about ruthless kings who conquered faraway lands in middle England? Hmm….maybe. Once I realized that my students would read as long as they could to see themselves in books and relate to the stories (or just be straight up entertained), then the old notion that boys don’t like to read quickly fell away. During my 6 years in the classroom (and 8+ years as a mom), I’ve built up quite a library of books brown boys actually enjoy. So here are 35 books brown boys will love to read (or have read to them)! Ages 0-5 Whose Toes are Those? By Jabari Asim (view it on Amazon here) Boy of Mine by Jabari Asim (view it on Amazon here) Caps for Sale by Esphyr Slobodkina (view it on Amazon here) Tikki Tikki Tembo by Arlene Mosel (view it on Amazon here) Sam and the Firefly by P.D. Eastman (view it on Amazon here) Yertle the Turtle and Other Stories by Dr. Seuss (view it on Amazon here) The Ghanaian Goldilocks by  Dr Tamara Pizzoli (view it on Amazon here) Ages 6-12  The Dreamer by Pam Munoz Ryan (view it on Amazon here) Ellray Jakes Walks the Plank by Sally Warner (view it on Amazon here) Petty Crimes by Gary Soto (view it on Amazon here) American Born Chinese by Gene Luen Yang (view it on Amazon here) One Thousand and One Arabian Nights by Geraldine McCaughrean (view it on Amazon here) Alvin Ho: Allergic to Girls, School, and Other Scary Things by Lenore Look (view it on Amazon here) De Colores and Other Latin American Folksongs for Children by Jose-Luis Orozco and Elisa Kleven (view it on Amazon here) The Meanest Thing To Say: A Little Bill Book for Beginning Readers by Bill Cosby (view it on Amazon here) The Very First Americans by Cara Ashrose (view it on Amazon here) The Music in Derrick’s Heart by Gwendolyn Battle-Lavert (view it on Amazon here) When the Beat Was Born: DJ Kool Herc and the Creation of Hip Hop by Laban Carrick Hill (view it on Amazon here) Miracle’s Boys by Jacqueline Woodson (view it on Amazon here) Niño Wrestles the World by Yuyi Morales (view it on Amazon here) Ages 12+ The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton (view it on Amazon here) Marcelo in the Real World by Francisco Stork (view it on Amazon here) Bamboo People by Mitali Perkins (view it on Amazon here) Bang by Sharon G. Flake (view it on Amazon here) We Were Here by Matt De La Peña (view it on Amazon here) 145th Street Stories by Walter Dean Myers (view it on Amazon here) Tears of a Tiger by Sharon Draper (view it on Amazon here) Mexican White Boy by Matt De La Peña (view it on Amazon here) The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie (view it on Amazon here) Monster by Walter Dean Myers (view it on Amazon here) Ages 17+ Down These Mean Streets by Piri Thomas (view it on Amazon here) Drown by Junot Diaz (view it on Amazon here)  The Beautiful Struggle by Ta-Nehisi Coates (view it on Amazon here) The Dew Breaker by Edwidge Danticat (view it on Amazon here)    If Beale Street Could Talk by James Baldwin (view it on Amazon here) What books do your boys love? Share them below! Share Tweet Related Post How Do You Encourage Your #BrownBoyGenius to Read? Book Review + Giveaway: ‘I Want to Be An Ath... Looking for Books With Black Characters For Your S... Here Are 3 Books We’re Loving Right...