We all deserve to belong somewhere. Each of us has our own story, with our own history, traditions and culture. Most of us find a home within our family, friends, school or a favourite pastime. Some may even find home tucked between the pages of a good book. So, it’s important that those books reflect our rich and diverse experiences – to make sure all readers can find a little place to call home.
We are sharing some wonderful books about inclusivity, kindness and respect, perfect to read and celebrate this Harmony Week. This list encourages freedom to express our unique ideas and where we come from. These books are extra special, ones that we feel really say welcome home.
The Big Book of Kindness helps little ones understand and harness the power of kindness. There are questions to answer on every page, lots to spot and giggle at and a lift-the-flap matching game to play. An ideal read for boosting empathy, by equipping children with the words they need to express themselves.
This book will put a smile on your toddler’s face, and encourage them to make other people smile, too.
Meet lots of different families in this fun lift-the-flap book, helping curious pre-schoolers understand how other children live. Featuring familiar situations, this book shows how different types of families communicate and work together. Perfect for Harmony Week, Find Out About: Families prompts early discussions about empathy and understanding differences.
Wide Big World by Maxine Beneba Clarke & Isobel Knowles
Difference is everywhere, just look and see. This whole-wide-big-world is wondrous-unique…
A beautiful picture book that addresses bullying and teaches acceptance in a fun and relatable way. This is a sparkling read for kids ages 3+, from award-winning author Maxine Beneba Clarke and illustrator Isobel Knowles.
When We Say Black Lives Matter by Maxine Beneba Clarke
A timely and powerful picture book exploring the background to the Black Lives Matter movement for young children. Through author-illustrator Maxine Beneba Clarke's glorious artwork and lyrical text, this book fosters activism, being anti-racist and using your voice and your power for good.
A brave, empowering and inspiring read for all children.
Heroes, Rebels and Innovators by Karen Wyld & Jaelyn Biumaiwai
Be inspired and amazed by these incredible Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander icons! With colourful artwork and evocative writing, this book tells First Nation stories every Australian should know.
Every Child a Song by Nicola Davies
When you were born, a song began...
With tenderness and heart, this book introduces young readers to the universal rights that every child is entitled to. Using the metaphor of song, it encourages children and adults alike to speak up for young people all around the world, and to treat one another with compassion and kindness.
Big Book of Festivals by Joan-Maree Hargreaves, Marita Bullock & Liz Rowland
Some festivals are outrageously fun and joyful, others are more serious. All of them bring people together to mark big events in life.
From tomato-throwing parties to graveside picnics, fire-walking ceremonies, crying baby competitions and the biggest bathing festival on Earth – this book introduces you to some of the world's most incredible cultural and religious celebrations.
Planet Omar: Accidental Trouble Magnet by Zanib Mian & Nasaya Mafaridik
Welcome, readers, to the imaginative brain of Omar! My parents decided it would be a good idea to move house AND move me to a new school at the same time. As if I didn't have a hard enough time staying out of trouble at home, now I've also got to try and make new friends…
Contemporary, funny and accessible, the story gives friendly insight into what home can look like for a suburban British Muslim family.
The Boy at the Back of the Class by Onjali Rauf
Told with heart and humour, The Boy at the Back of the Class is a child's perspective on the refugee crisis, highlighting the importance of friendship and kindness in a world that doesn't always make sense. Beautifully written and accessible, this is a must-read for Harmony Week.
The Year the Maps Changed by Danielle Binks
A middle-grade coming-of-age story inspired by true events about the bonds of family, the weight of grief and the power of compassion. This book showcases a modern blended family and a diverse cast of characters, while also introducing readers to the refugee crisis in Australia.
In the current climate of uncertainty surrounding school closures and access to books, Hachette Australia will be granting free permissions for online story-time events for those areas in a local lockdown.