Illustration by Robert Casilla.  Copyright (c) by Houghton Mifflin Company.  
Reproduced by permission of Houghton Mifflin Company.  All rights reserved.
Illustration by Robert Casilla. © by Houghton Mifflin Co.
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Cultural & Religious Groups
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Prejudice & Discrimination
 • Ableism
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Books in this category address a wide range of historical and current forms of bigotry, prejudice that is both intentional and systemic and prejudice that is unintentional, but just as hurtful. In some books prejudice is the primary focus of the story; in others it is part of the fabric of the book but not its central theme.
This is whichCatvalue: 6
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1.   ¡Si, Se Puede!/Yes, We Can!: Janitor Strike in L.A.
Diana Cohen (Author), Francisco Delgado (Author)
This bilingual fictional story is set against the backdrop of the successful janitors' strike in Los Angeles in 2000. It tells about Carlitos, whose mother is a janitor. She and the other janitors have decided to go on strike. How will Carlitos support his mother? He and the other children in his class join the marchers with a very special sign for his mom: "Si, Se Puede!/Yes, We Can!"
[Grade Level: 2 - 4]
2.   A Rose for Abby
Donna Guthrie (Author), Dennis Hockerman (Illustrator)
A young girl inspires her neighbors to help the homeless people in their community.
[Grade Level: K - 3]
3.   A Shelter in Our Car
Monica Gunning (Author), Elaine Pedlar (Illustrator)
When her father died, Zettie and her mother left their warm and comfortable home in Jamaica for an uncertain future in the United Sates. Zettie's mother can't find a steady job so they are forced to live in their car. But her mother's unwavering love, support, and gutsy determination give Zettie the confidence that, together, she and her mother can meet all challenges.
[Grade Level: 1 - 4]
4.   Amelia's Road
Linda Jacobs Altman (Author), Enrique O. Sanchez (Illustrator)
A young girl from a migrant-worker family overcomes the hardship of their frequent moves by creating a special place for herself.
[Grade Level: K - 3]
5.   Changing Places: A Kid's View of Shelter Living
Margie Chalofsky (Author), Glen Finland (Author), Ingrid Klass (Illustrator), Judy Wallace (Author)
Personal narratives of homeless children.
[Grade Level: 4 - 6]
6.   Erik Is Homeless
Keith Elliot Greenberg (Author), Carol Halebian (Illustrator)
A day in the life of a homeless child.
[Grade Level: 4 - 6]
7.   Farmworker's Friend: The Story of Cesar Chavez
Written by
David R. Collins
The life and accomplishments of the labor activist who helped organize migrant farm workers.
[Grade Level: 4 - 6]
8.   Fly Away Home
Eve Bunting (Author), Ronald Himler (Illustrator)
A homeless boy and his father, who doesn’t earn enough to pay the rent, live in an airport, moving from terminal to terminal. The boy describes their existence—sleeping sitting up, washing in the restroom and trying not to be noticed. The boy’s loneliness, anger and longing are vividly described in text and pictures. Though the book does not have a simplistic, happy ending, there is a reassuring togetherness between father and son and the boy finds a glimmer of hope when a trapped bird finally finds its freedom.
[Grade Level: K - 3]
9.   Get Set! Swim!
Jeannine Atkins (Author), Hector Viveros Lee (Illustrator)
As the bus passes by the extravagant homes in the rival school's neighborhood, Jessenia doubts her abilities, wondering how she and her team can compete against the girls who live in these houses. When this young Puerto Rican-American girl competes in her first swim, her confidence increases with her first victory as her parents proudly watch.
[Grade Level: Pre-K - 3]
10.   Gettin' Through Thursday
Nneka Bennett (Illustrator), Melrose Cooper (Author)
Andre dreads Thursdays. Thursday is the day before Mama gets paid at work each week - and the day when money is tight and spirits are low for Andre and his older brother and sister. As report card day approaches, Andre is excited because he anticipates making the honor roll, and Mama has promised a royal party for just such an event. But to Andre's dismay, report card day falls on a Thursday. This is a tale of how, despite limited means, a single mother and her children find a creative way to celebrate a son's achievement.
[Grade Level: 2 - 6]
11.   Jar of Dreams
Written by
Yoshiko Uchida
A young girl watches her family cope with financial pressures and racial prejudice.
[Grade Level: 4 - 6]
12.   Peppe the Lamplighter
Elisa Bartone (Author), Ted Lewin (Illustrator)
A young boy learns that every job is important.
[Grade Level: K - 3]
13.   Rag Coat
Written by
Lauren A. Mills
A young girl proudly wears her new coat made of clothing scraps and tells her classmates the stories behind each piece of fabric.
[Grade Level: K - 3]
14.   Stolen Dreams: Portraits of Working Children
Robert Conrow (Author), Lee Engfer (Author), David L. Parker (Author and Illustrator)
Photographs show the lives of working children around the world and the hardships they endure.
15.   The Hundred Dresses
Eleanor Estes (Author), Louis Slobodkin (Illustrator)
A young girl learns the realities of prejudice and classism while her classmates learn that hurting others is not ultimately satisfying.
[Grade Level: K - 3]
16.   The Storm: Students of Biloxi, Mississippi Remember Hurricane Katrina
Written by
Barbara Barbieri McGrath
Eleventh-grade Melissa Woodruff writes, "Everything in life is a privilege, not a right. And I never believed that until I lost it all." This is one of the many reflections included in this collection of stories, poems and artwork from 91 survivors of Hurricane Katrina in gardes K-12 from the Biloxi, Mississippi, area. The author organized "Books for Biloxi" to help restock the Biloxi school libraries after the devastation, and a portion of the proceeds from the sales of this book are donated to Biloxi Public Schools.
[Grade Level: 3 & Up]
17.   Those Shoes
Maribeth Boelts (Author), Noah Z. Jones (Illustrator)
"I have dreams about those shoes. Black high-tops. Two white stripes." All Jeremy wants is a pair of those shoes, the ones everyone at school seems to be wearing. But Jeremy’s grandma tells him they don’t have room for "want," just "need," and what Jeremy needs are new boots for winter. When Jeremy’s shoes fall apart at school, and the guidance counselor gives him a hand-me-down pair, the boy is more determined than ever to have those shoes, even a thrift-shop pair that are much too small. But sore feet aren’t much fun, and Jeremy comes to realize that the things he has — warm boots, a loving grandma, and the chance to help a friend — are worth more than the things he wants.
[Grade Level: K - 3]
18.   White Lilacs
Written by
Carolyn Meyer
A young girl's community is threatened when white people decide to forcibly relocate African-American families to make room for a new park.
[Grade Level: 4 - 6]
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