As the Library Media Technician, I serve over 400 elementary students and their families in a Title I school in Southern California. My students come from diverse backgrounds, variety of reading and learning abilities, and many face real-world life circumstances.
The students at my school are voracious readers!
They love learning through reading. They love the portal books provide to new worlds. They can't get enough of fiction and non-fiction books in our school library, whether they are in kindergarten or they are in 5th grade.
Our library is always seeking to develop an inclusive collection that is representative of all our students and our community. The enjoyment of reading can be sparked when students discover stories they can relate to. Reading diverse books can also help young readers develop understanding of others' experiences.
Reading stories that represent authentic, diverse narratives can help my students build empathy for others with experiences and circumstances different from their own, while making connections with stories that reflect their own narratives.
We need books written by women authors and stories about strong female characters, such as "Lucia the Luchadora" and "Rise of the Jumbies." We need books written by minority authors and stories about different cultures and diasporas, such as "Front Desk" and "Amal Unbound." We need stories about characters of different abilities, such as "Insignificant Events in the Life of a Cactus" and "Out of My Mind."
I have seen interest in reading grow when students find a connection with the characters and find themselves represented in the books they read. I hope these additional titles will spark the love of reading in my students as our library becomes more inclusive and diverse.
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