Blogger Jonathan Dolce

Teaching Children Banned Words

Enlightening & Teaching

2017 was a whirlwind year, with many, many unprecedented changes, challenges and fear.  To help our youngest patrons, it is critically important that we aid in their enlightenment, making them more socially aware, teaching them new concepts, and making them more culturally competent.

For 2018, I encourage you to explore these terms through your youth programming.  This will aid not only the children, but their parents as well.  So, let’s go!  Following each term will be suggestions for aiding you deliver these important concepts:


My wife – Marianne Dolce, a highly successful school media specialist  – showed me how to take a picture book or a story and build a theme from it – to reverse the storytime building process, and thereby integrate diverse materials into storytime – Every. Single Week.

Read up on ALA’s “Importance of Diversity


These quick “fables” help teach children all about how social security works: Kids and Families

Evidence-based &


I put these two under the same heading as evidence-based and science-based both have to do with the scientific method, and can easily be linked to STEM/STEAM programming.

STEM Hurricane Irma Activities – Kids Tweens Teens


Here’s a wonderful book list, great for teaching kids about how a fetus grows, as well as the love and feelings that go along with it!

Product Details

Ma! There’s Nothing to Do Here! A Word from your Baby-in-Waiting (Picture Book)

Jan 22, 2008

by Barbara Park and Viviana Garofoli
Product Details

Before You Were Born

May 1, 1998

by Jennifer Davis and Laura Cornell

Oh, Baby, the Places You’ll Go! Hardcover – July 14, 2015

The Wonderful Things You Will BeHardcover – August 25, 2015

Hello in There!: A Big Sister’s Book of Waiting (Growing Hearts) Hardcover – May 7, 2013

Waiting for Baby Board book – April, 2009


And this has to be the best book for teens on this topic:

Product Details

Being Jazz: My Life as a (Transgender) Teen

Jun 27, 2017

Not to be missed, of course is Jazz’s picture book, too!

I Am Jazz

Sep 4, 2014

by Jessica Herthel and Jazz Jennings
This one got a great review in SLJ:
Product Details

Who Are You?: The Kid’s Guide to Gender Identity

Dec 21, 2016

by Brook Pessin-Whedbee and Naomi Bardoff
If the concept of transgenderism would not come across as being genuine coming from you, there is always the topic of self-actualization.
Take for instance Red: A Crayon’s Story, which is a “funny, heartwarming, colorful picture book about finding the courage to be true to your inner self can be read on multiple levels, and it offers something for everyone.”
Red: A Crayon’s Story

Feb 3, 2015


Vulnerability has many connotations.  Here we are going to focus on vulnerable populations, or in the case of our programming, vulnerable children.

Vulnerability includes many, many things, but before that, realize that as well as being a youth services librarian, you probably already know: working with kids means there’s a fair amount of parenting mixed in with your librarianship. It’s unavoidable that during your working week, sometimes they will need a little mom-time or dad-time.

While this article is all about teachers and vulnerable children, the concepts remain the same: “Caring for Vulnerable Children“.

If you don’t have time for the article, here’s your top 10:

  • social drama/trauma
  • hunger
  • hygiene
  • abuse
  • inadequate clothing
  • untreated illness
  • poor vision

Climate change, Global warming & Sustainability

I cannot do better than send you to this previous ALSC blogpost to see an in-depth discussion of these three concepts.

In my home state of Florida (as in many places, let’s face it) these three concepts are linked to our immediate future.  Florida especially must pay attention to these terms because, it is “the region most susceptible to the effects of global warming in this country, according to scientists. Sea-level rise alone threatens 30 percent of the state’s beaches over the next 85 years“.


I was shocked to learn in the book, “Half the Sky” that women are the #1 most oppressed population on earth.

Kids can play the game on Facebook: Half the Sky Movement: The Game

Celebrating the strength in girls, reaching their potential, giving credence to who they are, their dreams and reaching their goals is a long process, and it needs to start as early as possible.

Feminism is not about anger.  It is about celebration, acceptance, and respect.  Boys, teenage boys and men have nothing to worry about if they are not part of the problem.


And here’s your reading list!

Please check out Quarto Knows, Little People, Big Dreams

Little Leaders: Bold Women in Black History
Little Leaders: Bold Women in Black History
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Malala’s Magic Pencil

Oct 17, 2017

Sonia Sotomayor: A Judge Grows in the Bronx / La juez que crecio en el Bronx (Spanish and English Edition)
Sonia Sotomayor: A Judge Grows in the Bronx / La juez que crecio en el…
I Dissent: Ruth Bader Ginsburg Makes Her Mark
I Dissent: Ruth Bader Ginsburg Makes Her Mark

Product Details

Strong Is the New Pretty: A Celebration of Girls Being Themselves

Mar 7, 2017

This Little Trailblazer: A Girl Power Primer Board book – September 5, 2017

A is for Activist
A is for Activist
Little Feminist Board Book Set
Little Feminist Board Book Set
She Persisted: 13 American Women Who Changed the World
She Persisted: 13 American Women Who Changed the World


  1. Miriam Lang Budin

    I hope we all make frequent use of the ideas in this post.

    The recommendations are so useful and important for storytimes and readers’ advisory as well as with our own friends abd family.

    Thank you!

  2. Lisa Nowlain

    Thank you! This is so cool!

  3. Jonathan Dolce

    My pleasure – glad you like it. : )

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