Books About Belonging and Identity

Hair Love, By Matthew A. Cherry

It’s up to Daddy to give his daughter Zuri an extra-special hair style in this ode to self-confidence and love. 
Age Groups: Big Kids, Little Kids

Discussion Questions

  • What makes Zuri feel like a superhero?
  • is there anything that makes YOU feel like a superhero
  • What’s your favorite way to do your hair?

Julián is a Mermaid, by Jessica Love

Julián is inspired by costumed mermaids he sees on the subway. This book celebrates individuality and self love. 

Discussion Questions

  • How did Julián feel when his abuela first saw him dressed up like a mermaid?
  • When was a time YOU felt like that?

Not Quite Narwhal, by Jessie Sima

Born to a family of narwhals, a little unicorn questions his differences until he discovers others just like himself.

Discussion Questions

  • Kelp tried to decide if he should be a land narwhal or a sea unicorn. He decides he can be both! What are some different groups you are part of?

Giraffes Can't Dance, by Giles Andreae

Gerald longs to dance like everyone else, but his legs are too long and skinny, and he can’t seem to get it right. 

Discussion Questions

  • In the story, the other animals laugh at Gerald and even call him names. How does that make Gerald feel?
  • What could they have done instead?

Bob the Artist, by Marion Deuchars

Bob the bird is just like all his friends, except for his skinny red legs! Bob learns that he’s great — just the way he is.
Age Groups: Big Kids, Little Kids
Skills: Feelings, friendship, Identity

Discussion Questions

  • What makes Bob special?
  • Is there anything that makes you feel bad about yourself?
  • What makes YOU special?
Little Blue and Little Yellow

Little Blue and Little Yellow, by Leo Leonni

Little Blue and Little Yellow are best friends. Join them as they become green and then find their true colors again.

Discussion Questions

  • What makes YOU who you are?
  • If you change, can you still be the same person?

Thank you to our friends at AppleTree Institute for recommending awesome books about identity and belonging!