Sunday, January 20, 2019

#ReadYourWorld: It's Multicultural Children's Book Day 2019!

Multicultural Children’s Book Day 2019 is in its sixth year. It was founded by Valarie Budayr from Jump Into A Book and Mia Wenjen from PragmaticMom. 

The mission of Multicultural Children's Book Day is"to not only raise awareness for the kid’s books that celebrate diversity, but to get more of these of books into classrooms and libraries."

What are multicultural children's books?

Multicultural children’s books are:
  • Books that contain characters of color as well as main characters that represent a minority point of view.
  • Books written by an author of diversity or color from their perspective. Search #ownvoices to discover diverse books written by diverse authors.
  • Books that share ideas, stories, and information about cultures, race, religion, language, and traditions. These books can be non-fiction, but still written in a way that kids will find entertaining and informative.
  • Books that embrace special needs or even “hidden disabilities” like ADHD, ADD, and anxiety.

Celebrating diversity is a huge part of my job as a book blogger, librarian, and reader.

I'll never forget the first day I walked into my first library in Houston ISD, a school that was listed as over 80% Hispanic, with one third of the students enrolled in bilingual education. When I asked about books that were in Spanish, I was shown to a tiny section of three small bookshelves. How sad, I thought, and finding diverse books became my mission.

My second school library is located in the Texas Medical Center and is exceptionally diverse, with over fifty different languages spoken in the home. Again, I sought out books that were in all fifty languages, a very challenging job.

My third school library is in my hometown, and again I faced the job of finding books in Spanish for our large bilingual population. This school is a PreK-2 only school, and the importance of having many beautiful books in Spanish for young readers is critical.

How happy I am this year to be asked to review two books for young children in Spanish and English!

Travel around the Spanish-speaking world in ¡NĂºmeros, Baby! by Lisa Hall and Golzar Kheiltash. Every young child loves a counting book, and you couldn't find a more perfect counting book for young Spanish-speaking children than this. For very young children, the pictures and text work as an ideal book for counting in Spanish and English. For slightly older children, the pictures and text work as an introduction to Spanish culture around the world. In the book, children can experience intriguing sites and events in the native cultures of Peru (the Nazca Lines), Panama (Desfile de las Mil Polleras), Costa Rica (Parque Nacional Volcan Arenal), Bolivia (Salar de Uyuni), Puerto Rico, Mexico, Cuba, Guatemala (Festival de Barriletes Gigantes), Spain, and Argentina. All this in a little board book with only a few words of text on each page. Delightful!

For more information on the book, take a look at the Baby Ventures Books website or Amazon.

¡Bienvenido al mundo bebe! opens with Tariq's mom having a baby,. Tariq is eager to share with his teacher and his class how the family celebrated the arrival of Tariq's new baby brother. The teacher decides to use this experience as a jumping-off point for the class to share the ways their diverse families celebrated the arrival of new babies in their cultures. One girl brings a little red egg, and explains that the red color is an offering of good luck to a new baby. A boy shares an aloe leaf with the other students who taste the bitterness of the leaf, and then offers a pot of honey to the children who then taste the sweetness, a lesson to the new baby that life can be both bitter and sweet. Many other traditions are shared in the story, and readers can enjoy learning about the many ways new babies are celebrated around the world. As an added bonus, this book is available in twenty-eight different languages. Finding a story about the beautiful diverse traditions of welcoming a new baby into the world that is available in so many different languages is a delight.

For more information about the book, take a look at Language Lizard or Amazon.

MCBD 2019 is honored to have the following Medallion Sponsors on board!

*View our 2019 Medallion Sponsors here:
*View our 2019 MCBD Author Sponsors here:

Medallion Level Sponsors

Honorary: Children’s Book CouncilThe Junior Library

Super Platinum: Make A Way Media

GOLD: Bharat BabiesCandlewick PressChickasaw Press, Juan Guerra and The Little Doctor / El doctorcitoKidLitTV,  Lerner Publishing GroupPlum Street Press,

SILVER: Capstone PublishingCarole P. RomanAuthor Charlotte RiggleHuda EssaThe Pack-n-Go Girls,

BRONZE: Charlesbridge PublishingJudy Dodge CummingsAuthor Gwen JacksonKitaab WorldLanguage Lizard – Bilingual & Multicultural Resources in 50+ LanguagesLee & Low BooksMiranda Paul and Baptiste Paul, RedfinAuthor Gayle H. Swift,  T.A. Debonis-Monkey King’s DaughterTimTimTom BooksLin ThomasSleeping Bear Press/Dow PhumirukVivian Kirkfield,

MCBD 2019 is honored to have the following Author Sponsors on board

Honorary: Julie FlettMehrdokht Amini,

Author Janet BallettaAuthor Kathleen BurkinshawAuthor Josh FunkChitra SoundarOne Globe Kids – Friendship StoriesSociosights Press and Almost a MinyanKaren LeggettAuthor Eugenia ChuCultureGroove BooksPhelicia Lang and Me On The PageL.L. WaltersAuthor Sarah StevensonAuthor Kimberly Gordon BiddleHayley BarrettSonia PanigrahAuthor Carolyn Wilhelm, Alva Sachs and Dancing DreidelsAuthor Susan BernardoMilind Makwana and A Day in the Life of a Hindu KidTara WilliamsVeronica AppletonAuthor Crystal BoweDr. Claudia MayAuthor/Illustrator Aram KimAuthor Sandra L. RichardsErin DealeyAuthor Sanya Whittaker GraggAuthor Elsa TakaokaEvelyn Sanchez-ToledoAnita BadhwarAuthor Sylvia LiuFeyi Fay AdventuresAuthor Ann MorrisAuthor Jacqueline JulesCeCe & Roxy BooksSandra Neil Wallace and Rich WallaceLEUYEN PHAMPadma VenkatramanPatricia Newman and Lightswitch LearningShoumi SenValerie Williams-Sanchez and Valorena Publishing, Traci SorellShereen RahmingBlythe StanfelChristina MatulaJulie RubiniPaula ChaseErin TwamleyAfsaneh MoradianLori DeMonia, Claudia Schwam, Terri Birnbaum/ RealGirls RevolutionSoulful SydneyQueen Girls Publications, LLC

We’d like to also give a shout-out to MCBD’s impressive CoHost Team who not only hosts the book review link-up on celebration day, but who also works tirelessly to spread the word of this event. 

View our CoHosts HERE.

Co-Hosts and Global Co-Hosts

A Crafty ArabAgatha Rodi BooksAll Done MonkeyBarefoot MommyBiracial Bookworms, Books My Kids Read, Crafty Moms ShareColours of UsDiscovering the World Through My Son’s EyesDescendant of Poseidon ReadsEducators Spin on it Growing Book by BookHere Wee Read, Joy Sun Bear/ Shearin LeeJump Into a BookImagination Soup,Jenny Ward’s ClassKid World CitizenKristi’s Book NookThe LogonautsMama SmilesMiss Panda ChineseMulticultural Kid BlogsRaising Race Conscious ChildrenShoumi SenSpanish Playground

TWITTER PARTY Sponsored by Make A Way Media: MCBD’s super-popular (and crazy-fun) annual Twitter Party will be held 1/25/19 at 9:00pm.E.S.T. TONS of prizes and book bundles will be given away during the party. GO HERE for more details.

Free Multicultural Books for Teachers:
Free Empathy Classroom Kit for Homeschoolers, Organizations, Librarians and Educators:

Hashtag: Don’t forget to connect with us on social media and be sure and look for/use our official hashtag #ReadYourWorld.

 Read Your World Music Video

Music Video: MCBD has its first ever music video! How cool is that? Thank you to Annie Lynn and Walt Wilcezewski for donating their time and expertise to create our first official Read Your World Music Video. View it here and you may see some familiar faces and books!

Multicultural Children's Book Day Poster


  1. I love multicultural children's books and always sought them out for my son.

  2. I’m glad that there are librarians who are dedicated to finding children’s books in many different languages. My schools always had a tiny selection of Spanish books, which is weird, considering how many students knew Spanish.

    Aj @ Read All The Things!

  3. Your Multicultural Children's Book Day sounds fabulous! I first experienced a focus on diversity in the 60s, when I was living in San Francisco and did some field work in the Mission District. Of course there are many other parts of the city to explore, but it was a start.

    Enjoy the event...and your books. Thanks for visiting my blog.

  4. Great post! Thank you for sharing it.

  5. I love how you went out of your way to find books in different languages for your students. My library is starting to buy more and more books in various languages for our patrons.

  6. This is something my school needs to do better at. (And a reason why we NEED A CERTIFIED LIBRARIAN, but that's a whole 'nother soapbox.) Thanks for sharing this sweet titles.

  7. Thanks for supporting Multicultural Children's Book Day!

  8. What a fabulous project - and is so necessary for schools these days. Thank you for educating me about this issue, Deb:))

  9. Your lifelong coommitment to multi-cultural children’s books is fascinating. When I was a child all we had were some. very inauthentic books about twins in a number of countries. Nothing about the children who were actually in school. Obviously the types of books you are finding would be good for all children, not just the members of each group separately.

    best... mae at

  10. Yes to celebrating diversity in reading, it's so important especially for kids to be able to connect to characters and to learn from them as well. Great post! Happy reading.

  11. Great project. Yay to multicultural books.

  12. Finding diverse books is certainly easier now than when I began as a Media Specialist. I never worked in a district with more than a handful of kids from other cultures though. Come see my week here. Happy reading!

  13. This is wonderful! Thanks so much for sharing.

  14. Fantastic project. For the last two years I've dedicated Mondays to multicultural books. My weekly updates

  15. Great information! THANKS, Debbie!


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