Books to Broaden Your Munchkins' Minds

from Shane's Muslim Connect

I wouldn’t trade my Indiana upbringing for anything. Although its homogeneity was only exceeded by its humidity, it profoundly shaped me. Maybe your kids are likewise growing up where everyone is the same color, speaks the same language, and, more or less, serves the same God. Or maybe your neighborhood is changing, getting browner and more diverse in ways that shouldn’t, but do, feel a little scary. 

Either way, don’t we want our kids and grandkids to grow up with the empathy and wisdom of God? I don’t care so much if they know the books of the Bible in order, but I do want them to love God and their neighbors like Jesus does. 

If your littles are readers, here a few titles that will open wonderful doors in their minds. These come from a librarian friend who’s curating such books in part to prepare her charming little white Indiana town for the coming influx of Muslims. See her complete list here

Big Red Lollipop by Rukhsana Khan (picture book). Culture clash is a real thing! Rubina is going to her first-ever birthday party, and her mother doesn’t understand why she doesn’t want to bring her little sister. Misunderstandings abound and grace is required. 

Amina's Voice by Hena Khan (middle school). Amina has never wanted the spotlight, but everything is changing since. . .her best friend is "Americanizing" and thinks Amina should too. When Amina's mosque is vandalized, can she find the courage to speak up and stand up for what she believes?

Darius the Great is Not Okay by Adib Khorram (teen). Darius has only known life in America, but for the first time he is going to Iran. Navigating the minefield of culture clash and his desire to make friends, Darius may just find out what it actually means to be “okay.”

I’d love to hear your suggestions. If you’d like to see what else is on my reading shelf, let’s connect at