Kaitlin Kamalei Brandon is the Founder and Director of Colorful Pages. I am always honored to call her my friend and to see her grow into her role as an anti-racist educator. She dedicates her time and work towards empowering our youth, educators, district leaders, and beyond towards achieving social justice and equity in our school systems. One of her missions is to spread the power of multicultural literature in our homes, schools, curricula, and libraries.
Whether you are a student, educator, parent, family member, librarian or community member, Colorful Pages is THE source to find a vast selection of books to teach and discuss the topics of race, identity, family, community, power, privilege, systems and conflicts stemmed from racism. These are the kind of books that I wish I had read when I was a young girl. I would have felt more seen and heard for who I was, where I came from and where I could go. I would have realized that I had the agency to be a change-maker in our world - that things don't have to be the way they are. Literature provides us with mirrors and windows, yet a majority of children's books are written about characters who are white and animals/other.
Colorful Pages aims to highlight books about people of color and written by people of color. The Spectrum for Multicultural Literature explains the need to have a variety of multicultural literature so that we, especially our students and children, are exposed to more than one type of narrative of a particular individual or group.
As we navigate through our diverse society, it is crucial that we broaden our understanding of one another through our unique stories and experiences. Having a combination of Conversation Books, Exploration Books, and Representation Books is a great way to start and continue this journey.
Colorful Pages provides book reviews, book lists, and author interviews. You can even request a book review or workshop! From holidays to national issues, Colorful Pages is quick to respond and provide resources to inform and push us to have important learnings and conversations through multicultural literature.
Young children draw what they know - themselves, their families, hobbies, and favorite places. In elementary school, I recall a time when I was drawing myself but then was confused about what color to fill in for my skin color.
Was I brown? But I wasn't THAT brown. My skin isn't black, white, orange, or peach. I ended up using the brown crayon and coloring with it lightly to "achieve" my tan skin, as you see in the Teacher Model picture above.
Multicultural supplies are resources that can help children feel seen and represented at home and at school. I did not even know that these products existed until I became a teacher. Recently, I went to Walmart and I was SO excited to see the "Colors of the World" section. Before, I had gotten packs of the multicultural crayons with only 8 colors and now, Crayola has expanded to 32 total colors to cover multiple skin and eye shades.
I put together some links for you to view and purchase multicultural supplies for your home and/or school! I encourage teachers and family members with young children to add these into your collection of classroom and craft supplies.
If you are a new teacher, your school may reimburse the money that you spend out of pocket for your students and/or you can set up your own donation fund through DonorsChoose.
Links to Multicultural Supplies:
If you know of any People of Color businesses who are selling similar products, please comment below with their info. :)