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Wonder Bunch Media is grateful for the opportunity to spend the month of February reflecting on the stories of those who have made America a safer place for everyone to live, learn, and grow. Since 1976, the United States has declared February the month of celebrating the struggles, journeys, and accomplishments of Black Americans. This Black History Month, we’ve compiled a list of five books we were excited to add to our collection this year. These titles uplift the voices and stories of those who found their way over centuries of slavery, segregation, and inequality.
These titles are available wherever books are sold, but we have linked to Semicolon Bookstore, a Black-owned online bookstore and gallery. While you’re there, be sure to browse the rest of the store’s offerings, which include stories for children of all ages. Anti-Racist Baby is a fun board book for infants to toddlers, while Betty Before X is a beautiful telling of Malcolm X’s future wife and her childhood, as told by their daughter.
Written by Jamia Wilson and illustrated by Andrea Pippins, this uplifting book introduces your family to 52 Americans who changed the way we see the world. You’ll be reintroduced to names you know, from Martin Luther King Jr. to Muhammed Ali, and meet names you never knew were changing the face of our world. Your family will love the celebratory nature of the book, and will be excited to learn more every time you open its pages.
In this addition by poet Rio Cortez, the very serious nature of Black History is approached in a sensitive and age-appropriate way. The book celebrates the achievements of artists and civil rights heroes, while the gentle illustrations by Lauren Semmer and rhyming cadence of the story maintain the tone that Black History should be taught to everyone, at every age.
We all struggle when the time comes to see our little one off on their first day of school. For Ruby Bridges and her mother, the stakes were higher than we can imagine. In the slowly desegregating year of 1960, Ruby was the first Black child to enter the previously all-white William Frantz Elementary in New Orleans. Ruby found courage that shouldn’t have been needed to be asked of a first grader, and her bravery paved the way for education opportunities for each of us.
Written by Ellen Devine, Henry’s Freedom Box tells the heartbreaking story of a young boy born into slavery. Henry’s story is one of a brutal life, but told with respect to children’s sense of justice and hope. When Henry finds his way to freedom, your child will both cheer for his strength and ingenuity, and mourn for the childhood and the family that were stolen from him. This unflinching story is told without losing hope, and with sensitivity to the truth of slavery. Illustrated by Coretta Scott King Award-winning artist Kadir Nelson.
LeBron James is more than a world-class athlete. He’s a reminder that our children are writing their own history today. James uses high-energy rhyming text to empower children to write their best future every day. Named for the school he opened in his hometown of Akron, James uses this powerful book to joyfully illustrate that each child is home to unlimited greatness. The book is a slam-dunk, and the message is timely no matter when you find yourself in its pages. Your family will love this book. I Promise.
We are more than Wonder Bunch Media. We are parents, hoping to raise our children in a world as beautiful as their imaginations can make it. We are working every day to create a world as just, kind, and loving as all of our children deserve to live in. We believe that a better American History starts every single day!