Reading is crucial for all kids, in order to improve their reading comprehension, literacy, and language skills. Research demonstrates that kids are more engaged when they read books that they can relate to, especially if the books connect to their heritage or cultural background. It is important to note that not all books about Spanish-speaking individuals are relevant to all Hispanic kids, as books contain events and settings that may not be familiar to certain Hispanic kids in the United States. Therefore, it is important that Hispanic kids read books that are relevant to their culture and heritage. Fortunately, Lectura Books has published a variety of culturally relevant books that Hispanic kids from various backgrounds can relate to. Take a look at the 5 best culturally relevant books for Hispanic kids and parents in the United States.
1) A New Sun
“A New Sun” by Max Benavidez and Katherine Del Monte features a story that many Hispanics in the United States can relate to. The book showcases reflections of an immigrant arriving to a new land. Here he finds people that all want the same thing – to have hope and make their dreams come true.
2) The Shark That Taught Me English
“The Shark That Taught Me English” by Michelle Markel is another story that Hispanic kids in the United States can relate to – especially English Language Learner (ELL) kids. The book tells the story about a young girl, Sofia, who does not speak a single word of English. The story takes a positive turn when the young girl’s teacher develops a method that helps her understand English.
3) Family Stories
“Family Stories” was written by a variety of authors, and results in a rich cultural treasure trove of imagery and story. This book showcases the memorable childhood experiences of ten gifted authors. Not only do the authors write their short story, but they also illustrate it too.
4) Maria de Flor: A Day of the Dead Story
“Maria de Flor: A Day of the Dead Story” by Max Benavidez is a story that many Mexican Americans can relate to. The book features a sweet story about the preservation of love across generations and the meaning of the Day of the Dead. Children learn that Day of the Dead is a bittersweet time for remembrance. Additionally, kids learn the importance of family traditions.
5) The Flores Family Café
“The Flores Family Café” by Ann Stalcup shares the story about a family in Baja California that decides to take a chance on a new life and learn that change can be tough in the long run. This heartwarming story of the strength of family bonds amidst the face of obstacles.