Dear Friends,                        February 2015

Much has happened in the past year to put this country's racial issues squarely in our sight line. Recognition that our society needs to use better ways to communicate is at least a step toward progress.  In children's literature we can see positive action in the growing momentum of the We Need Diverse Books movement. Let's make sure publishers take note. Ask your bookseller (including Amazon) to stock more books with nonwhite heroes - and then buy those books!

This year marks the 50th anniversary of the 1965 Voting Rights Act. You will find some excellent picture books that tell that story on our website -  under the heading "How They Made History" - as well as a growing list of "Great Picture Books of Black History" and great web resources for multicultural books.

ALERT: Due to severe weather across the U.S., we pushed back the Mini-Grant deadline! NEW DEADLINE: March 31
How They Made History
In these compelling picture books, there was a part for everyone to play in the civil rights movement of the 1960s.
Announcing the 2015 EJK Book Award Winners!
Meet Chieri Uegaki, New Writer for Hana Hashimoto, Sixth Violin, and Chris Haughton, New Illustrator for Shh! We Have a Plan. You'll be hearing much more from these talents in days to come! 

Great Mini-Grants
Want to promote reading and healthy activity for kids? One library did it by putting a StoryWalk on a fitness trail!

Tip: There's still time to plan a program even as the deadline looms. Focus on one academic goal, then find a fun way to engage the kids. With the curriculum as your guide and a little help from your grant budget, you'll soon be good to go!  

Plus, we're paying tribute to African-American children's book authors and illustrators, whose work is helping create a more diverse and inclusive culture for the next generation. Check out our honor roll on Facebook and Twitter throughout the month.  

Executive Director
Ezra Jack Keats Foundation
Bringing the multicultural, 
 creative spirit of  
Ezra Jack Keats  
into children's lives  
and literature

John Henry 

Animated Read-aloud  

In Ezra's bold retelling, American legend John Henry is a very human hero. Watch and listen as his epic story unfolds. 

  Read more  


Bedtime Stories