A List of Diverse Books for Aussie Teachers

“Kids who see their own experiences reflected in books gain self-confidence. And when they read about experiences that differ from their own, they develop curiosity and empathy.” Bookieboo


As educators of children, books are often our go-to when we want to illustrate ideas, begin conversations or delve deeper into understanding and empathy for others. We are seeing lots on social media about auditing and updating our home and classroom bookshelves to include titles that contain a diverse range of characters and address issues of inclusion.

As teachers (and/or parents), our responsibility lies in exposing the children in our care to books that are inclusive to help them grow. Celebrating diversity means reading books that have characters from different families, genders, ethnicity, religions, abilities, languages, sexual orientations, and a mixture of skin colours.



At this point, we want to say; we are by no means experts in this area. Like others, we too, are listening and learning. We decided to collate this list of books to help Aussie teachers in choosing some diverse titles for their classrooms and libraries. They are books that can be easily sourced in Australia. Many are inexpensive from large stores such as Big W and Kmart.

Indigenous Picture Books

  • Our home, Our heartbeat by Adam Briggs

  • Welcome to Country by Aunty Joy Murphy & Lisa Kennedy

  • Stories for Simon by Lisa Miranda Sarzin

  • Stolen Girl by Trina Saffiotti

  • Say Yes by Jennifer Castles & Paul Seden

  • Tell em’ by Katrina German & Rosemary Sullivan with the children of Manyallaluk School


Titles about being Australian

  • I’m Australian Too by Mem Fox

  • If I was Prime Minister by Beck & Robin Feiner

  • The Little Refugee by Ahn Do



Books About Equality and Kindness

  • Whoever you are by Mem Fox

  • An ABC of Equality by Chana Ginelle Ewing

  • All the ways to be smart by Davina Bell Lynas

  • This Love by Isabel Otter & Harriet

  • Kindness makes us strong by Sophie Beer

  • It’s Okay to be Different by Todd Parr

  • Change Starts with Us by Sophie Beer


Diverse Characters

  • Under the Love Umbrella by Davina Bell

  • Ruby’s Worry by Tom Percival

  • Malala’s Magic Pencil by Malala Yousafzai

  • The Girls by Lauren Ace & Jenny Lovlie

  • Don’t touch my hair by Sharee Miller

  • Sophia Sparks by Elanor Best

  • Persistence by Zanni Louise

  • Little Leaders: Bold Women in Black History by Vashti Harrison

  • Books from the ‘Little People, BIG DREAMS’ series such as: Mahatma Gandhi, Rosa Parks, Martin Luther King Jr and Zaha Hadid.



Instagram accounts that can also help:

@DiverseReads

@BooksForDiversity

@InclusiveStorytime

It is our job as teachers to get books these in front of our student’s eyes, into their hands, part of our curriculum and on the shelves of our classrooms, libraries and homes. It is everyone’s responsibility to step up and be inclusive.



Now might be the time when you are looking for activities or resources to help you discuss or learn about diversity in your classroom. We have the following print and go resources you might find helpful:


What to Read Next:

The Impact of Positive Language in the Classroom

Supporting Student Wellbeing

Harmony Activities for Kids



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