11 Ways to Celebrate Diversity in November

Cheers to the season of thankfulness and blessings! November is filled with color and joy all around. This month we celebrate Day of the Dead, Diwali, Thanksgiving Day, Family Stories, Military Families , National Adoptions, and Native American Heritage. Another important element that I like to bring awareness to are some of the challenges that effect ALL CULTURES & PEOPLE, like Alzheimer’s Disease and November is the month dedicated to that. This one is huge, because the way we pass on our traditions, family heritage and culture is by sharing our experiences and memories - this is why I love books so much, because they are forever documented expressions that connect us with ourselves and those around us. And with that..I hope you enjoy Marlo Bea's lit pick of the month.
1. Granny Needs My Help by Deborah L Mills
In Granny Needs My Help: A Child's Look at Dementia and Alzheimer's the main character Zéh is excited, happy, and challenged as she helps and continues to show her granny expressed love. She gains an understanding of dementia, as she has fun with and is challenged by her granny.  Granny Needs My Help is a true gem for families and children of all ages.
2. Funny Bones by Duncan Tonatiuh
Funny Bones tells the story of how calaveras came to be. The amusing figures are the creation of Mexican artist José Guadalupe (Lupe) Posada (1852–1913). Lupe learned the art of printing at a young age and soon had his own shop. In a country that was not known for freedom of speech, he drew political cartoons, much to the amusement of the local population but not that of the politicians. He continued to draw cartoons, but he is best known today for his calavera drawings. They have become synonymous with Mexico’s Día de Muertos festival.
3. When God Made You by Matthew Paul Turner
From early on, children are looking to discover their place in the world and longing to understand how their personalities, traits, and talents fit in. The assurance that they are deeply loved and a unique creation in our big universe is certain to help them spread their wings and fly. 
Through playful, charming rhyme and vivid, fantastical illustrations, When God Made You inspires young readers to learn about their own special gifts and how they fit into God’s divine plan as they grow, explore, and begin to create for themselves.
4. I Am Thankful by Sheri Wall
Thanksgiving books for kids teach us about coming together with our loved ones and to give thanks for all that we have. I Am Thankful is an adorable, rhyming storybook that follows three different families as they celebrate the holiday with their own traditions, acts of kindness, and ways of giving back.
5. I Love Masala Me by Nikita Gupta
Joselyn and Amit are children that belong to two worlds, and two different but beautiful cultures. Growing up, they could choose to assimilate into American culture completely, or they could choose to embrace their multicultural heritage. They both decide to celebrate the richness of their multicultural (Indian and American) identities. This book is a celebration of culture and multicultural identity through food from chicken nuggets and chicken pakora, to cheese curds and paneer tikka, etc. Find yourself immersed in a delightful children's book that explores the gift of being a masala or a multicultural child, all while you enjoy learning some Hindi and English too.
6. What Makes a Family by Hannah Bruner
Readers will fall in love with this lyrical, whimsical ode to families and the common thread that creates them all. From blended families to foster families and all the families in-between, this colorful, inclusive picture book teaches children and grown-ups alike that no matter how a family is created, what truly makes a family is CHOOSING to LOVE.
7. First Laugh - Welcome, Baby! by Rose Ann Tahe and Nancy Bo Flood
In Navajo families, the first person to make a new baby laugh hosts the child's First Laugh Ceremony. Who will earn the honor in this story?

The First Laugh Ceremony is a celebration held to welcome a new member of the community. As everyone--from Baby's nima (mom) to nadi (big sister) to cheii (grandfather)--tries to elicit the joyous sound from Baby, readers are introduced to details about Navajo life and the Navajo names for family members. Back matter includes information about other cultural ceremonies that welcome new babies and children, including man yue celebration (China), sanskaras (Hindu) and aquiqa (Muslim).
8. Night Catch by Brenda Ehrmantraut
When a soldier's work takes him half-way around the world, he enlists the help of the North Star for a nightly game of catch with his son.
9. Binny's Diwali by Thrity Umrigar
Binny is excited to talk to her class about her favorite holiday. But she struggles to find the words.Taking a deep breath, she tells her classmates about the fireworks that burst like stars in the night sky, leaving streaks of gold and red and green. She shares with them delicious pedas and jalebis. And she shows them clay lamps, called diyas, which look so pretty all the children ooh and aah.
10. Fry Bread by Kevin Noble Maillard
Told in lively and powerful verse by debut author Kevin Noble Maillard, Fry Bread is an evocative depiction of a modern Native American family, vibrantly illustrated by Pura Belpre Award winner and Caldecott Honoree Juana Martinez-Neal.
Explore 85 individual Cherokee characters debossed and printed with animal images and numbers. Teach the entire Cherokee syllabary as developed by Cherokee silversmith Sequoyah in 1821.