Children’s Literature to Develop Awareness and Advocacy for Social Justice
Keywords:children's literature, social justice, diversity and inclusion
Children’s literature can enhance readers’ understandings of themselves and others in an increasingly diverse world. This article examines the need for inclusion and discussion of diverse literature in the classroom. Specifically, the authors describe a partnership between fifth graders and preservice teachers to digitally discuss the book, A Long Walk to Water (Park, 2010) using a student-friendly blog. Both groups broadened their worldview and the need for social justice through the reading and blogging about the selected literature. The authors share classroom implications and extensions to advocate for social action. Projects such as the one described in this article remind teachers and children that common bonds of humanity can build empathy, unite us all, and inspire us to take action for social justice.