brooklyn children museum
#IndigenousReads by Indigenous Writers: A Children’s Reading List
Only 1% of the children’s books published in the U.S.
By The Conscious Kid Library

“Indigenous people are very much a part of today’s society. With their stories, Indigenous writers share the range of their lives, past and present, and we hope that you’ll embrace and share their stories. This list of 14 recommended children’s books by Indigenous writers and illustrators was curated by The Conscious Kid Library and American Indians in Children’s Literature, in partnership with Brooklyn Children’s Museum.”

Sandy at the Brooklyn Children's Museum Today

Sandy’s mind was blown today.  She wanted to know the name of everything and she savored and repeated the words again and again.  There was a stuffed racoon that she pointed to and asked “cat”?  When I said “Racoon” she said “Ooowh, wa-cooooon”.  Then it was all “Wa-coon is big.”  “Wa-coon is cold?”  “Clemmie see Wa-coon?”

I’m sooo fascinated by watching Sandy put language together.  There’s a lot she wants to say and many moments where she pauses and searches for words and a way to express what she’s thinking.  She’s obsessed with emotions these days.  Which is interesting because I haven’t taught them to her yet- in fact, I don’t even think we have a book on them (don’t worry, I’m on it).  I do use ‘frustrated’ and ‘angry’ a lot when she’s having a tantrum to say something like “I know you’re angry that you can’t sit in the taxi driver’s lap” (yeah, that’s actually a big issue for us right now.  We’ve already been kicked out of a cab her tantrum was so intense). 

So, Sandy is into the ideas of ‘sad’ and ‘scared’.  Scared comes from the animated short “The Gruffalo’s Child” which we stumbled upon.  Sandy loves it.  It’s all about whether or not something is scary.  Today Sandy would see an animal and say “He’s scary” and then “Are you scared?” and then “I’m not scared”.  This was bumped up once Liz exclaimed that she is scared of spiders.  Sandy has  said “Liz scared of spiders” at least 100 since. 

The most magical part of the trip for me was when we were in the cafeteria and Sandy looked up at the very high ceiling and said “humongous”.  At first I didn’t understand and I wasn’t paying her much mind but she said it 3 times in a row and with a specific inflection that I recognized from a Sesame Street episode that she was watching this morning.  Finally, I said “Oh my god, you’re right, the ceiling is HuMONgous!” and Sandy lit up and said ‘humongous’ a few dozen times more.  Liz and I marveled at the connection she made with the tall ceiling.  So exciting.

Clementine at the Brooklyn Children's Museum Today

Clementine didn’t care about the giant lizards or the birds or the room with all of the lights, she was focused on only 2 activities:

1. Walking up and down steps.  And if she could, she would have stayed at the first set of steps the entire day.

2. Hugging every freaking adult in the museum.  She went from one mom’s legs, to another mom’s legs, then over to an awkward teenager, to a staff person, to a dad, to a grandma, and on and on and on.  Every room we went to she had everyone’s attention and smiles- which just egged her on.