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'A Smart Girl's Guide: Race & Inclusion' gives kids a toolkit for how to talk about race

American Girl Website
Cover of 'A Smart Girl's Guide: Race & Inclusion,' by Deanna Singh.

Race can be a difficult topic to talk about for people of any age. For kids, it can seem impossible, but author Deanna Singh hopes her new book A Smart Girl's Guide: Race & Inclusion can help change that for its readers. The book gives kids a toolkit for how to talk about these topics and offers actionable advice.

"I definitely wanted for readers to be able to pick it up, read pieces of it, put it back down and then go try some things. And so it's really set up to encourage people to step outside of their comfort zone," says Singh.

In the U.S., many people are raised to believe that conversations about race and diversity are inappropriate. Adults can discourage these conversations with phrases like, “we don’t see color” or “race doesn’t matter.” How we talk about these topics with kids can fundamentally change how they engage with other people.

"There's this notion that if you talk about race, it's going to create racism when really the opposite is true, right? We do have conversations about race. But where we have those conversations, who we can have those conversations with, who has them amongst each other — all of those things are the things that have created this space of making it taboo," says Singh.

Deanna Singh is the chief change agent at Uplifting Impact and the author of A Smart Girls’ Guide: Race & Inclusion. The book was profiled in this month’s Milwaukee Magazine and is being published by American Girl.

Joy Powers hosts and produces Lake Effect. She joined WUWM in 2016.
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