There is a massive problem in children’s literature and not enough people are talking about it. Will you help us to start the conversation?
Children with disabilities and children with sicknesses and children who are racial minorities are tragically underrepresented in the stories available to them.
If you haven’t yet read the last few blog posts, I’d encourage you to go back and read through the content that we’ve posted since our post entitled: Books: Lollipop or Broccoli? Keepsake Tales’ personalized kid’s books will help your children CRAVE stories! In those posts, we’ve contended that children’s literature is really important, that children must see themselves in the stories that they read, and that there is tragic underrepresentation in children’s literature today. In fact, there are severe consequences when children can’t see themselves in the stories that they read.
In our post entitled: You won’t believe how many kids can’t see themselves in stories: Only 5 books out of 1,000 include a child with a disability or sickness! you’ll see that a healthy dialogue is underway to track diversity and inclusion of racial minorities in children’s literature. This is fantastic and Keepsake Tales is proud to join with other publishers in creating stories where children of color can see themselves reflected in the role of the protagonist.
However, you’ll notice that I didn’t include any statistics regarding the underrepresentation of children with sicknesses and disabilities in that same blog post. Why? Because nobody is leading this conversation. Nobody is assembling and tracking statistics for children with disabilities in children’s literature in the same way that we’re doing for racial minorities.
It’s crucial to understand how big the problem is. For instance, we know that 25% of American children are Latino/a, but only 5% of children’s books feature Latino/a children. Therefore, we know the size of the problem that we’re solving by creating more books featuring Latino/a children. In the same way, Keepsake Tales wants to quantify the size of the problem that we’re facing for children who have disabilities or who are sick.
But we can’t do it alone. We need your help (I promise, it will be easy). If you have children’s books at your home, please take a few minutes to help us catalog them!
- Go to wherever you keep all the children’s books at your home
- Click here to take you to the online database that we’re building!
- Scroll down until you find open rows for you to begin cataloging your books
- For each book, simply type in the Title and the Author of the book.
- Then, if your book Includes a child with a disability or sickness, type “Yes” in the Disability or Sickness column, otherwise type “No”
That’s it! Easy, peasy.
Then, please share it with your friends and family. The more people we have contributing to this project, the better!
We’ll compile the data and create a simple tracking page on our site where this data will be available to anybody who wants to access it.
And, in the meantime, while we work together to quantify the size of the “underrepresentation problem” for children with disabilities and sicknesses, rest assured that Keepsake Tales is committed to solving that problem.
How? If you’ve kept up with our weekly blogs, you’ll already know the answer!
At Keepsake Tales, we exist because we believe that every child is one of a kind. We believe that every child is intrinsically valuable. We are building the most personalized children’s books in the world so that every child will understand that they matter. We start our illustration process with a picture of the child. We turn that picture into a character that matches the illustration style of the story so that every child – regardless of what they look like – can see themselves as the champion of their very own Keepsake Tale.
So, while we’re doing the math to understand the size of the problem that we’re solving, we’re also actively putting children with disabilities in the story.
Won’t you join us? While you’re on our site, be sure to sign up for our mailing list!