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Book List – discussing race and racism with children

Fiction and non-fiction books to support children learning about race and racism at primary and secondary level.


Key Stage 1


Questions and Feelings About: Racism

by Anita Ganeri

This informative picture book explains what racism is and what its effects are, and is designed to help children with their questions and feelings. Gentle illustrations and simple, straightforward text address this tough topic with sensitivity and care.

For readers aged 5+

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Children in Our World: Racism and Intolerance

by Louise A Spilsbury

Illustrated by award-winning artist Hanane Kai

A beautifully illustrated picture book that explores what racism and intolerance are and how they affect children all over the world.

The Children in Our World books help children make sense of the larger issues and crises that dominate the news in a sensitive and appropriate manner.  With relatable comparisons, carefully researched text and striking illustrations, children can begin to understand what racism and intolerance are, how they affect children, adults and daily life, and how readers can help.

For readers aged 5+

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Key Stage 2


Dealing With…Racism

by Jane Lacey

In this series, case studies are combined with sensible, practical advice to help children understand difficult issues.

Dealing with Racism also features a short playscript to act out situations and discuss with a partner or as a group.

For readers aged 7+

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Ghost Boys

by Jewell Parker Rhodes

This beautifully written, timely novel features a heartbreaking and powerful narrative that draws connections with real-life events. A poignant and gripping story about how children and families face the complexities of race in today’s world.

For readers aged 9+

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View Ghost Boys discussion points



What is Race? Who are Racists? Why Does Skin Colour Matter? And Other Big Questions

by Claire Heuchan and Nikesh Shukla

An important book on race and racism, encouraging children to think for themselves about the issues involved.

What is Race? explores the history of race and society, looks at belonging and identity, the damaging effects of stereotyping and the benefits of positive representation. The authors talk sensitively about how to identify and challenge racism, and how to protect against and stop racist behaviour.

For readers aged 10+

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Key Stage 3


Black History Matters

by Robin Walker

Black History Matters chronicles thousands of years of black history, from African kingdoms, to slavery, apartheid, the battle for civil rights and much more. Important and inspiring black personalities, from Olaudah Equiano to Oprah Winfrey, are highlighted throughout, while achievements and progress are balanced alongside a look at the issues that many black communities continue to face.

For readers aged 12+

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by Brittney Morris

Black Panther meets Ready Player One in this dynamite YA novel. A fierce teen game developer battles a real-life troll intent on ruining the Black Panther-inspired video game she created and the safe community it represents for black gamers.

For readers aged 12+

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Download free discussion questions