24 #BlackHistoryMonth Black and Muslim Children’s Books {Resource}

This list of 24 children’s books was created to celebrate Black Muslim authors and protagonists for February’s Black History Month.

The Pew Research Center estimates the total populations of Muslims in the United States at 2.35 million, with Black/African-American Muslims making up 20% of that population. Some have ancestral ties as turn of the century slaves stolen from West/Central Africa, or others have converted in the recent centuries.

In American history, Malcolm X is considered the first person to start the movement among African Americans towards mainstream Islam, after he made the pilgrimage to Mecca, in Saudi Arabia.

I’ve already compiled a list of Malcolm X books, so I thought I’d gather a list of other books written about and/or by Black Muslims in America, for children.

This blog post is part of the fifth annual Black History Month Blog Hop from Multicultural Kids Blog. This event brings together various blogs from around the world to explore the rich history and cultures of Africa and the African diaspora.

Please visit the other blogs at the bottom of this post for more educational posts about this important month in our calendar.

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Nanni’s Hijab by Khadijah Abdul-Haqq

Adam To Zamzam And Fun In The Sun by Jamila Alqarnain & Karimah Alhark

Fun in the Sun by Jamila Alqarnain & Karimah Alhark            

Hind’s Hands: A Story about Autism by Jamila Alqarnain & Karimah Alhark    

Princess And The Good Deed, The by Jamila Alqarnain & Karimah Alhark      

Rasheed’s Deeds by Jamila Alqarnain & Karimah Alhark            

Yak in the Back by Jamila Alqarnain & Karimah Alhark           

Not Quite Snow White by Ashley Franklin

Hannah Habibi Learns About Modesty by Janette Grant

Sameerah’s Hijab: and the first day of school by Janette Grant

Beauty Of My Hijab by Fatimah Ashaela Moore Ibrahim

Proudest Blue: A Story of Hijab and Family, The by Ibtihaj Muhammad

Bashirah and The Amazing Bean Pie Ameenah Muhammad-Diggins

Ngozi’s Little Brown Princess Tea Party by Asiyah Muhsin-Thomas

Sadiq and the Desert Star by Nuurali. Siman          

Little Brother for Sale by Rahma Rodaah    

Muhiima’s Quest by Rahma Rodaah,         

Wahid and His Special Friend by Robyn Saleem-Abdusamad   

You Are Beautiful by Robyn Saleem-Abdusamad 

Zaynab’s Enchanted Scarf      Robyn Saleem-Abdusamad  

Betty Before X by Ilyasah Shabazz        

Malcolm Little by Ilyasah Shabazz        

Silly Monkey by Rhoda Sye

Mommy’s Khimar by Jamilah Thompkins-Bigelow        

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Black History Month on Multicultural Kid Blogs

Welcome to our fifth annual Black History Month Blog Hop, where together we explore the rich history and cultures of Africa and the African diaspora.

You can also follow our Black History board on Pinterest:

Participating Blogs

Creative World of Varya on Multicultural Kid Blogs: Black History Month – How It Matters to Us

A Crafty Arab: 24 Black and Muslim Children’s Books

Growing Up Gupta: 10 Interesting Facts About Shirley Chisholm

Great Family Reads: Books About Black Leaders in History for Kids

Mama Smiles: Black History Month Facts and Printable Timeline

Mommy Evolution: African American Toddler Books

Crafty Moms Share: Black Inventors

#IqraChat The Map of Salt and Stars {Resource}

Reading Arab American literature is an important part of my life, as it helps expand my knowledge of my culture and history.

I recently read the book The Map of Salt and Stars by Zeyn (Jennifer Zeynab) Joukhadar to help me better understand the Syrian refugee experience.

This book moved me in ways that no book has done in a long time.

  • First, the journey involves not one but two young female protagonist, fighting odds well beyond their years.
  • Second, the chapters, for each country entered, include poems by the author that are beautiful and could stand on their own in a chapbook. I found myself reading them over and over again, often out loud.
  • Third, the assault scene was difficult to read, but I don’t believe our society discusses it in the open enough. Reading it brought back painful memories but opened up dialogue that was long overdue with my own teens.

I contacted the author and asked him if I could do a Twitter and Facebook chat online to discuss the book with others. A sort of book club, but not just in my living room or at a local restaurant, but one that anyone that wants to can join in.

Between now and February 26th, read or listen to the book, then join us on ACraftyArab Facebook or ACraftyArab Twitter where you’ll answer the following questions in time sessions (subject to adjustment):

  1. 8PM: What does the title The Map of Salt and Stars mean to you?
  2. 8:10PM: How do the two different timelines influence the plot?
  3. 8:20PM: Did having Nour as the narrator change the way you viewed the events of the novel?
  4. 8:30PM: How do the characters rely on their religion throughout the novel?
  5. 8:40PM: How is The Map of Salt and Stars like or different than other novels you have read about refugees?
  6. 8:50PM: What is the significance of the stone and why was it discarded by Nour?

To help find each other on Twitter and Facebook, we’ll all be using the hashtag #IqraChat and ##MapofSaltandStars. (Iqra is the Arabic word for Read.)

Please be sure to join us on February 26th at 8pm EST to talk about this riveting book.


Growing Multicultural Children’s Book Day #ReadYourWorld {Resource}

Today is Multicultural Children’s Book Day, created to bring attention to all of the amazing children’s books available that celebrate diversity. Check out the hashtag #ReadYourWorld to see a wide variety of kidlit.

I am excited to be a co-Host for another year for this important initiative.

My job duties include receiving a diverse book to review from a publisher or author. I also enjoy making a craft or activity to go with the book review:

Last year, I asked my daughter’s school library to get involved by adding READ YOUR WORLD letters to their walls. We added diverse books to the top of the shelves to make them easier to find.

This year, I contacted the same librarian again and she immediately said yes. I went back to cut out more letters.

I spent a lovely afternoon in a children’s library, decorating the walls to get them ready.

I also went a step further and cut out extra letters for a few schools in my city. I added the letters to a personalized note that explained what MCBD was, and included a few copies of 2019 poster.

I went to seven schools and six welcomed the information.

At one office, the woman sitting behind the secretary started to get physically gitty with joy, when I was describing what I was dropping off, for their school librarian.

I hope to be able to start earlier next year and also go to a few public libraries.

Baby steps!

Visit A Crafty Arab on Pinterest to see more resources.

Be sure to check out the Multicultural Children’s Book Day party to see more diverse books from bloggers all over the world.

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