February marks Black History Month, a time for recognizing and celebrating the achievements of Black Americans throughout U.S. history. We can’t think of a better way to honor some of the most incredible and influential people in our country’s history than sharing their stories with our kids.

Picture books are the perfect way to spark important discussions about race + equality with your children. Books make things like diversityempowerment and history accessible to even the youngest among us.

Below are our 24 favorite books that will inform + inspire throughout Black History month and the rest of the year.

change sings

1. Change Sings: A Children's Anthem

We still have chills from Amanda Gorman’s brilliant recitation of her poem “The Hill We Climb” at the 2021 Presidential Inauguration. Her equally beautiful lyrical picture book follows a young girl who leads a cast of characters on a musical journey, learning along the way that together, they have the power to make meaningful change.

opal lee

2. Opal Lee and What It Means to Be Free: The True Story of the Grandmother of Juneteenth

On June 19, 1865, Union General Gordon Granger arrived in Galveston, Texas, informing enslaved African Americans that they were finally free and that the Civil War was over. But it wasn’t until 2021 that it would be honored as a federal holiday. Celebrate the vision and tenacity of one of the women who made it happen–activist Opal Lee, the “Grandmother of Juneteenth” with a message of hope, unity, joy, and strength.

because claudette

3. Because Claudette

They’ve likely heard of Rosa Parks, but there were many inspiring people behind the Montgomery bus boycott. Expand their view of history with the lesser-known story of Claudette Colvin–the teen whose activism set off the chain of events nine months earlier.

the 1619 project born on the water

4. The 1619 Project: Born on the Water

Detailing the rich history of Black Americans’ origin story with powerful verse and striking illustrations, this lyrical picture book is a must-have.

Hey Black Child

5. Hey Black Child

Hey black child
Do you know who you are?
Who really are?

Do you know you can be
What you want to be
If you try to be
What you can be?

This lyrical poem celebrates black children and inspires them to find their voice—and their dreams.

Hidden Figures - The True Story of Four Black Women and the Space Race

6. Hidden Figures: The True Story of Four Black Women and the Space Race

Based on the bestselling book and Academy Award-nominated movie, this is the true story of four black women who helped NASA launch into space.

Radiant Child - The Story of Young Artist Jean-Michel Basquiat

7. Radiant Child: The Story of Young Artist Jean-Michel Basquiat

The vibrant, beautiful collage-style illustrations in this book bring to life this story of a talented young artist.

Crown - An Ode to the Fresh Cut

8. Crown: An Ode to the Fresh Cut

The rhythmic prose and larger than life illustrations make this ode to the barbershop a perfect read-aloud and a celebration of black boys’ self-esteem + confidence.

Little Leaders - Bold Women in Black History

9. Little Leaders: Bold Women in Black History

This bestselling book introduces readers to 40 women who changed the world.

Princess Hair

10. Princess Hair

Every kind of hair is princess hair—and deserves to be celebrated!

My Name Is Truth - The Life of Sojourner Truth

11. My Name Is Truth: The Life of Sojourner Truth

The true story of how a former slave transformed herself into an inspirational preacher.

Look What Brown Can Do

12. Look What Brown Can Do!

Dream big with this inspirational picture book for the youngest of readers.

Henry's Freedom Box - A True Story from the Underground Railroad

13. Henry's Freedom Box: A True Story from the Underground Railroad

A dramatic true story of a slave who mails himself to freedom, coupled with astoundingly beautiful art from superstar Kadir Nelson.

Let The Children March

14. Let the Children March

The true story behind the 1963 Children’s Crusade march in Birmingham, Alabama following Dr. Martin Luther King’s speech.

I, Too, Am America

15. I, Too, Am America

Langston Hughes’ celebrated poem is brought to life in this moving ode to unity.

Nelson Mandela

16. Nelson Mandela

Breathtaking paintings accompany poignant verse in this autobiography of Nobel Peace Prize winner Nelson Mandela.

Martin's Big Words: The Life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

17. Martin's Big Words: The Life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

An accessible and inspiring picture book biography of one of history’s most influential leaders.

Juneteenth for Mazie

18. Juneteenth for Mazie

This bright, lively picture book celebrates Juneteenth, the day that commemorates emancipation from slavery in Texas in 1865.

Mae Among the Stars

19. Mae Among the Stars

Mae Jemison was the first African American woman to travel to space and her story will inspire young readers to reach for the stars!

Malcom Little - The Boy Who Grew Up to Become Malcolm X

20. Malcolm Little: The Boy Who Grew Up to Become Malcolm X

Malcolm X’s daughter shares the story of her father’s childhood in this acclaimed picture book biography.

Before She Was Harriet

21. Before She Was Harriet

Harriet Tubman was many things before she was the courageous woman we know today; this lyrical biography captures her story.

The Other Side

22. The Other Side

This classic tells the story behind an unlikely friendship formed in the midst of segregation.

Seeds of Freedom - The Peaceful Integration of Huntsville, Alabama

23. Seeds of Freedom: The Peaceful Integration of Huntsville, Alabama

This honest, hopeful picture book tells one of the lesser known stories of the Civil Rights Movement.