There is so much power in sharing our stories. Join this read aloud of the book ‘Let’s Talk about Race’ by author Julius Lester.
Common Reads “Let’s Talk About Race” by Julius Lester
Race is part of our story, but it isn’t all we are — because, beneath our skin, we all look the same. Our differences are in the details. In this video, hip hop artist and poet, Common, narrates the story “Let’s Talk About Race” by author Julius Lester.
Before watching the video with children:
Tell children, “we are going to listen to a story, called “Let’s Talk About Race” authored by author Julius Lester, about who we are and how race is part of that story along with many traits of who we are.”
Pause the video throughout the read aloud and ask your child to share what they notice about the illustrations.
After watching, you might:
Ask children, “what do you notice about the pictures and people on the cover of the book?” Affirm that they have different skin colors.
Ask children: “how do you think our story began?” Talk to your children about your family’s history and origins, traditions, and what race you are.
Ask children: “what race are you?”. If you are a white parent, explicitly name that you are white; this de-centers whiteness the invisibility and normalcy of whiteness in our society. For example, we often refer to the racial identity of people of color, however do not explicitly racialize white people.
Ask children to touch their face and head to feel their bones beneath their skin, then let them touch your face and head. Narrate that beneath our skin we all look the same.
Ask children: “when you meet someone new, what do you wonder?” Affirm that our race is only one part of who we are and it’s important to learn each other’s story. Race does matter, but we need to learn about everything that makes a person who they are.
Talk about the idea that people may think they are better than someone else because of their race and why it is untrue.
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