Blogger Library Service to Underserved Children and Their Caregivers committee

Toolkit: New Americans – Read Alouds

Black, brown, and white hand overlap atop an American flag

The Library Service to Underserved Children and Their Caregivers committee is devoting the 2021-2022 calendar year to creating a vibrant, dynamic toolkit that provides ALSC members with up-to-date resources for working with marginalized populations.  Each toolkit page will provide professional and leisure reading recommendations, support for programming, and materials for families.  As dynamic documents, these pages will continue to grow and develop as we find new resources, share our experiences, and continue to learn.

New Americans

The focus of this year’s toolkit is on serving children and their caregivers who are new to America. There are approximately 44 million people living in America who were born in different countries. People identifying as new Americans may fall into many categories, some of which may be: refugee, asylum seekers, migrants, or immigrants.

As our understanding of different needs increases, libraries are recognizing an important role in supporting new American communities.  These supports may include specialized resources, adapted programming, and community partnerships to support children and their caregivers. 

Recommended Read Alouds

The toolkit will be released in three sections throughout the year, professional and community resources, recommended read-alouds, and programming and outreach examples. The portion of the toolkit available to you today, is a great list of picture books to read to children and parents about children who are new to America.  You can also share these stories with families to build understanding of the New American experience.

A great read aloud to get you started is The Proudest Blue: A Story of Hijab and Family. In this beautiful picture book a young girl admires her older sister’s beautiful blue, first day of school hijab.

Connect With Us!

Take a moment to visit the LSUCTC Toolkit for all our recommended resources!

We would love your help!  Please email us with your recommendations, favorite resources, and inspiring community outreach endeavors:  We would love to add your recommendations to our Toolkit sheet.  If you are willing to share your successful programming ideas and experiences, we would love to highlight those as well.

Kymberlee Powe is the Children/ YA Consultant at the Connecticut State Library. She loves reading, embroidery, crime shows, and has just begun her journey into the world of crochet. The opinions in this article are her own.

Emily R. Aguiló-Pérez is an assistant professor of children’s literature at West Chester University of Pennsylvania. She served on the 2022 Newbery Award Committee. Some of her favorite activities include hiking, singing, dancing, and playing trivia. 

Featured image Migration is provided by Ralphs_Fotos, courtesy of Pixabay.

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