Reaching for New Levels
News & Resources
June 2020
Reading About Racism: Resources, Recommendations, and a Call to Antiracist Action
" The time is always ripe to do right."
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
These words were spoken by Dr. King in a sermon just four days before his assassination in 1968. In 2020, people are marching for racial justice and demanding change of policy and institutions that uphold white supremacist ideology because Black Lives Matter.

The following are resources and ideas that you can use to discuss racism with your children and further your education on antiracism in action.

CNN/Sesame Street Racism Town Hall
Earlier this month, CNN and Sesame Street partnered for a family oriented discussion about racism. If you are uncertain about where to start when talking to your kids about racism, watch this together then discuss any questions after. The program focuses on questions from children and parents and is appropriate for all ages. It is viewed in 3 parts, for a total of 50 minutes. Watch here.

Book Recommendations
Birth to Age 3: Antiracist Baby by Ibram X. Kendi
3 to 5: Hands Up! by Breanna McDaniel
5 to 8: Child of the Civil Rights Movement by Paula Young Shelton
All Ages: A Kids Book About Racism by Jelani Memory
Parents: Raising White Kids: Bringing up Children in a Racially Unjust America by Jennifer Harvey

There are many more books to read and has great recommendations.

Antiracism Audit for Home Book Collections
Inventory the books that are available to your children and ask yourself the following questions:
  • Whose stories are represented?
  • Whose stories are missing?
  • Is your child only seeing and reading books about people who look like themselves?
  • How is the beauty, intelligence, and contributions of people of color included in the collection?
  • Is the majority or sole representation of people of color from a deficit or oppressed perspective?
Make intentional purchases or utilize your public library to work toward an antiracist book collection. Giving your children access to books, images, stories, and toys that celebrate Black culture and experience will help them be antiracist children and adults.

Racial issues are complex. There is always more to learn. The children in our community are watching and hearing about the current civil unrest making it even more important to talk to them about racism. Individual antiracist action makes a difference and a community of antiracist action will improve the lives of everyone in Story County.
Raising Readers in Story County is celebrating 20 years!
We are incredibly grateful to all of the students, families, volunteers, donors, and staff who have helped us reach this important milestone. Mark your calendars for our virtual anniversary celebration on Sunday, August 30 . More information will be available in the next newsletter.
Thank you for 20 Years!