Every year for MCBD we get the most amazing array of people and talents. I (Becky) truly love getting to know each and every one of our authors, publishers, and reviewers.
This year is just as exceptional with one extra unique stand-out; we have several Doctors who Write Diverse Books for Kids this year and that is just so admirable! Out of sheer curiosity, I decided to ask these docs what it was that inspired them to write their book. Enjoy!
Juan J. Guerra, MD, and The Little Doctor/El doctorcito
Dr. Crystal Bowe and Doc Like Mommy and The Patience Song
Dr. Melissa Martin and Tessie Tames Her Tongue
As I child therapist, I provide services for children of various ethnicity and I found a lack of diverse therapeutic picture books for kids so I wanted multiracial characters in my book. Homes, schools, libraries, and child therapy offices need more diverse picture books. Kids need to see children that look like themselves in books. Caucasian children need to read diverse picture books to learn about multiracial children and to develop empathy for other cultures.
Kimberly A. Gordon Biddle, PhD in Child and Adolescent Development from Stanford University and LaDonna Plays Hoops
Why do I Write Multi-Cultural, Own Voices Fiction for Children?
My friend Becky Flansburg asked me to think about this question. My answer to this question is important to me personally and professionally. I have personal experiences, professional experiences, and professional knowledge that set me on a quest to publish Multi-Cultural, Own Voices Fiction for Children. By the way, my quest to write began 3 decades ago and continues still today.
My personal experiences began when I was a girl who loved to read books. I enjoyed reading, but I could not relate fully to the protagonists in the books I read. The protagonists and their lives seemed different from I and my life were. I learned early that my life was not depicted or written about in the books I read. Additionally, the characters who were of my same gender and ethnic group seemed negative and undesirable. I would read books as a child and feel invisible or defective in some way.
Now as a Child and Adolescent Development professional, I realize that I was not the only one who had these experiences. Moreover, research shows that these early reading experiences impact the psychological development of children, especially African-American children and other children of color. As the mother of a young child, I have seen the impact on him, too. I still read books for children to my son and for my own personal and professional reasons. Although, there are more books about children of color, or children with varying abilities, or children with varying religions, or children with other differences; there are still not enough in terms of the numbers. Additionally, these stories may sometimes be insensitive and sometimes still depict children who are diverse as negative, undesirable, or defective in some way.
Currently, when I write Multi-Cultural, Own Voices fiction for children, I try to depict my cultural experiences and life in as positive and accurate a manner as possible. Stories such as these are good for all children to read, even those from the majority culture. Stories such as these are good for our United States and global societies. These stories need to be written, read, and heard. These stories will have some unique aspects and some universal aspects. Nevertheless, these own voice stories need to be told.
Be sure and click the images to check out these wonderful author/doctors and their books.
ONE MORE THING:
The 5th Annual Twitter Party is coming! Join us for great conversations, fun prizes and the chance to # ReadYourWorld on 1/27/18!
Join us on Jan 27th, 9pm EST for 5th annual Multicultural Children’s Book Day Twitter Party! We promise it will be a fun and fast-paced hour of great book conversations, sharing of diverse book ideas and lots of prizes. Follow the hashtag #ReadYourWorld to join the conversation and to also win one of 12-5 book bundles and one Grand Prize Book Bundle (12 books) that will be given away at the party!
We will be giving away Book Bundles every 6 minutes!
Twitter Party Details:
When: Saturday, January 27th
Time: 9 pm to 10 pm EST
Where: On Twitter!
Sponsored By: Scholastic Reading Clubs
Hosted by: Co-Founders Valarie Budayr of Jump Into a Book and Mia Wenjen from PragmaticMom!
We will be discussing the state of children’s book publishing and giving away diversity book bundles every six minutes! We invite EVERYONE to join us: authors, publishers, parents, caregivers, librarians, KidLit lovers. You don’t have to be an author or publisher sponsor to join us! Let’s talk about our favorite multicultural and diverse children’s books, authors, and illustrators!