Substitutes, FTW! blog - Veronica Chase
"Growing up, I was an avid reader. I loved book series because they gave you got to see your favorite characters grow. Today, when I’m observing the books students choose to read and what they check out from their school libraries, I’m struck by a major difference in some of their popular fiction versus what I grew up reading.
When I was growing up, it was quite a task to find a book series featuring a female protagonist who was not white. Ramona Quimby, Nancy Drew, the Sweet Valley Twins, 95% of the Babysitter’s Club, etc. were all white. They are wonderful books and children from any race can read and enjoy stories about these characters, but I wondered what young black, Hispanic, Asian, and other races lost when they got few chances to read books about characters that look like them. If any race can read and love Ramona, shouldn’t they all be given the chance to read and relate to a black character, or an Asian one? Why don’t publishers make more of these books? Tough we are aware of the reasons why it’s important for students to read books like this, there is still a paucity of books available that spotlight racially diverse characters.
Nevertheless, there are now a lot more options for young readers. I love seeing girls with their noses in books, and I was struck when I saw girls of all races reading two series starring diverse female protagonists: Katie Woo and Dyamonde Daniel .
Katie Woo is an award-winning series for young readers. Katie’s series contains short sentences and nice illustrations for students just beginning chapter books. Her covers are as vivid and inviting as her stories! Katie is in first grade and she’s had to deal with the loss of a beloved pet , a bully and lying . I love that likeable series features an Asian protagonist, though it is sadly one of the few I’ve ever seen that does so.
http://substitutesftw.blogspot.com/2011/06/diverse-book-series-for-young-readers.html" - Substitutes, FTW! blog
June 11, 2011