For the media

10 kids’ books to read for Black History Month

By The Health News Team | February 15, 2024
Family sitting on sofa reading book together

February is Black History Month, a celebration of achievements by Black Americans and their valuable role in our country’s history. Understanding the importance of Black history is vital for children of all ages and races. It leads to greater empathy and understanding; helps to end racism and inequity; and honors the contributions of Black Americans in all areas of life, from science and art to society, politics and medicine.

What’s more, reading is good for everyone, even babies. It can relieve stress, spark the imagination, increase brain connectivity, decrease depression, improve relationships and help build language skills.

While teachers and students in classrooms might mark the month with lectures and worksheets, parents can learn alongside their kids at home or in the local library and experience the joy of reading with these top 10 Black History Month books.

10 Books to Read for Black History Month

  1. Baby Young, Gifted, and Black by Jamia Wilson
    Highlighting the talent of Black leaders and changemakers from around the world, this board book helps parents encourage their young dreamers to develop self-confidence. (Ages 0 to 2)

  2. The ABCs of Black History by Rio Cortez
    In this ABC book like no other, the story spans continents and centuries, triumph and heartbreak, creativity and joy as it celebrates Black history and culture. (Ages 2 to 8)

  3. Little Leaders: Bold Women in Black History and Little Legends: Exceptional Men in Black History by Vashti Harrison (Ages 3 to 9)
    These two books educate and inspire young children through sharing the stories of trailblazing Black women and men throughout history. (Ages 3 to 9)

  4. Martin’s Big Words: The Life of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. by Doreen Rappaport
    This picture book biography of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. brings his life and message to young children through his own words. (Ages 5 and up)

  5. Hidden Figures: The True Story of Four Black Women and the Space Race by Margot Lee Shetterly and Laura Freeman
    This beautiful picture book explores the story of four female African American mathematicians at NASA and how they overcame gender and racial barriers to succeed. (Ages 6 to 8)

  6. If You Were a Kid During the Civil Rights Movement by Gwendolyn Hooks
    In this book for young readers, follow two girls as they find themselves in the middle of a civil rights demonstration, and find out how the fight for equality changed our country. (Ages 7 to 9)

  7. 100 African Americans Who Shaped American History: Incredible Stories of Black Heroes by Chrisanne Beckner
    Offering 100 easy-to-read biographies, this book is engaging and packed with facts about historical figures from America's founding to today. (Ages 7 to 12)

  8. One Crazy Summer by Rita Williams-Garcia
    A Newbery Honor Award Winner, this moving, funny novel tells the story of three sisters who head to Oakland to meet their mother for the first time and learn about their family, history and America. (Ages 9 to 11)

  9. Brown Girl Dreaming by Jacqueline Woodson
    In this powerful memoir, the author tells the moving story of her childhood in vivid poems, sharing what it was like to grow up as a Black American in the 1960s and 1970. (Ages 9 and up)

  10. Harlem Stomp! A Cultural History of the Harlem Renaissance by Laban Carrick Hill
    In this exploration of a fascinating era, learn about the African Americans of Harlem, New York, during a time of intellectual, artistic, literary and political blossoming. (Ages 12 and up)

You might also like:

Get the best of Sharp Health News in your inbox

Our weekly email brings you the latest health tips, recipes and stories.