Sharing My Growing Anti-Bias Resource List

Anti-bias Resources Graphic

My family, friends, and I have had, and continue to have, valuable and important conversations around race, equity and justice, belonging, disability, identity, and privilege. And I’ve been blessed to have access to conversations and resources shared by friends, family, community, and national organizations to help me as I grow my understanding and anti-bias education on a number of topics. With family and friends directly affected, it is very important to me to listen, speak up, stand up, and take action to bring about true change and justice, but this work and taking action for change should be important to everyone.  This past spring, I was able to gather a list of some of these resources to share with the PTO and families at my children’s school via their website. However, since I won’t have access to maintain that list in perpetuity once I retire from the PTO board and because I wanted to add to this list with resources for an older audience as well, I wanted to bring it here to my site to share with any that may find it valuable and also add resources specific to the intersection of anti-bias work and tech (the original list was intended for families specifically with K-5 students). (You can also see my Equity Statement and Anti-Racism Policies and my post on Digital Citizenship, Online Privacy, and Fact Checking.)

I’m certainly not a subject matter expert in any of these areas and this list also isn’t meant to be exhaustive (because there are a ton of amazing resources out there), but rather I see this list as a starting point to foster conversation and knowledge and a place to collect some of the resources I have been personally sharing with my own family, friends, and community in one place. Since I am not an expert, I want to amplify the voices of people who are knowledgeable and experts, through schooling, studying, and lived experience.

My plan is to continually come back and edit this post as I find additional resources. To that end, this list was last updated June 16, 2021.

 

At the intersection of anti-bias, diversity, and inclusion work and technology:

 

Sites that address a variety of topics from racism to disability to identity and more:

  • Learning for Justice (formerly Teaching Tolerance) has resources on a variety of topics for educators, but they are also great for parents
  • The Zinn Education Project promotes and supports the teaching of people’s history with free, downloadable lessons and articles organized by theme, time period, and grade level
  • A Kids Book About is a good book series to start family discussions on a number of topics, and now they also host a podcast
  • A helpful article about microagressions (also available as audio) as “the ‘micro’ in microaggression doesn’t mean that these acts can’t have big, life-changing impacts. They can, which is all the more reason to address them when you see them.” As Dr. Ainsley Lambert-Swain, PhD, pointed out in a tweet, “‘micro’ in microaggressions refers to the level of analysis in which they are observed, not the scale or magnitude of the harm they inflict.”
  • On the topic of tone policing, this piece by Nicole Cardoza is helpful
  • This word bank from The Student Ignition Society offers kid-friendly definitions of social justice words like “ally” vs “accomplice”
  • This short but helpful explainer on how to think of privilege from Marie Beecham, “Some people have a hard time recognizing privilege, saying ‘I work hard. I don’t get things handed to me.’ I understand that. Here’s how I respond: privilege isn’t bonus points for you and your team. It’s unfair penalties the other team gets that you don’t. Privilege isn’t the presence of perks and benefits. It’s the absence of obstacles and barriers. That’s a lot harder to notice. If you have a hard time recognizing your privileges, focus on what you don’t have to go through. Let that fuel your empathy and action.”

 

On the topic of race and racism:

 

On the topic of LGBTQIA+:

 

On the topic of disability and neurodiversity:

On the topic of allergies:

This is a cause close to my heart as well, as my children experience peanut allergies and celiac disease and often feel othered as a result.

 

Booklists*:

Many groups publish children’s booklists and/or where to find diverse books that feature characters from a variety of backgrounds and/or address a variety of topics. I’m listing some of our favorites.

*For my family and my biracial children, it is important that not all the books featuring a diverse cast of characters are heavy or about trauma and hardship. We strive to have a book collection that shows kids from all different backgrounds and experiences also just being kids and experiencing and celebrating joy. I keep in my mind two Tweets I love:

  • “We need diverse representation not only so every kid can see themselves as the hero of the story, but so that every kid can understand that *other* kinds of kids are *also* the heroes of the story,” as said by Rabbi Danya Ruttenberg
  • “I’d like to see the book world move away from saying that stories that depict a marginalized group ‘humanize’ them. Those stories humanize *us*—the readers—by helping us to more fully understand everyone’s inherent humanity and value,” as said by Randy Ribay

And I felt this Twitter thread started by @heisereads did a great job highlighting how we need to examine not only a book’s message but also its illustrations with a critical eye because while it may be strong in message in one area (representation/an inclusive cast of characters, an important message, etc.), stereotypes/microaggressions/harm can be perpetuated in other areas (see talk in the thread about the eyes, but also the wheelchair, clothing, and adornment). Sometimes the whole book is a loss, but sometimes it can be a worthwhile exercise to engage with your young reader to help them examine the work critically and learn (like how we’ve engaged with Race Car mentioned below in my house).

I was asked about some of the titles that my family is reading, so here is a photo of some of the books we read and/or have gifted if it helps (click the photo to expand). Some books we definitely pre-read and don’t read at bedtime but rather during the day when we have time for discussion. Also they aren’t all totally perfect (for instance, I have a problem with the ending of Race Car and how simply and unrealistically it is wrapped up) but they are good convo starters. I’ve also included Bluebird, which is a simple quiet book about death.

Books my family owns or has gifted that feature diverse characters

Here is where I’m also trying to keep a list of titles I have read and appreciated or that I want to read as I combat my own biases and grow my understanding (click here). This list includes titles for all ages, but is by no means exhaustive.

 

Some of my favorite podcasts right now that focus on fascinating (and often hard) history and current events, both nationally and at times globally:

 

NOTICE: This page contains links to websites operated by third parties. These links are provided for your convenience only and do not constitute or imply continual monitoring of any/all of their content by Codified Concepts or Maren Vernon. Resources may become stagnant, non-working, or out of alignment over time and I will try to remove them as that occurs.

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