The best inclusive children’s books

Who am I?

I’m a feminist author, illustrator, and UX designer who thrives on projects that help to improve awareness, healing, and community around marginalized identities. When I became a mother, I realized the importance of teaching and educating children around inclusivity and empathy. When we allow children to open their minds and question stagnant culture, we set the stage for real and meaningful collective growth. I center my work around this goal and focus on inclusive themes, often from perspectives that are unexpected.

I wrote...

Feminism Is for Boys

By Elizabeth Rhodes,

Book cover of Feminism Is for Boys

What is my book about?

Boys can play sports with girls, wear dresses, cook, play with dolls, express emotions, be friends with all genders, and believe in equality. Feminism is not just about equal rights for all genders, but also about the pursuit to eradicate gendered stereotypes - allowing everyone to be their truly authentic selves. Boys are some of the most important allies in the movement for gender equality. Feminist boys should not be the exception, but the norm. Feminism is for everyone, including boys!

The books I picked & why

Shepherd is reader supported. We may earn an affiliate commission when you buy through links on our website. This is how we fund this project for readers and authors (learn more).

Making a Baby

By Rachel Greener, Clare Owen (illustrator),

Book cover of Making a Baby

Why this book?

This inclusive guide to how every family begins is exactly the book I was looking for to help my daughter understand such important topics. Covering everything from sex, IVF, adoptions, surrogacy, vaginal birth, cesarian, miscarriage, and more. I believe starting these conversations young helps to build trust and confidence in the parent-child relationship. To make a baby you need one egg, one sperm, and one womb. 

Bodies Are Cool

By Tyler Feder,

Book cover of Bodies Are Cool

Why this book?

This cheerful love-your-body picture book gives parents a fun way to approach body positivity. Each spread has beautifully illustrated scenes with all types of bodies; harry bodies, wiggly bodies, every age bodies, brown skin bodies, all gendered bodies, and so much more! Watching my daughter delightfully point to one of the gorgeously curvy tummies with absolute love was everything I was hoping for.

It Feels Good to Be Yourself: A Book about Gender Identity

By Theresa Thorn, Noah Grigni (illustrator),

Book cover of It Feels Good to Be Yourself: A Book about Gender Identity

Why this book?

Gender identity isn’t complicated, but adults tend to think it to be that way. With this book, Thorn does an amazing job at teaching us how simple it can and should be. This book and its bright illustrations helped me tremendously to teach my child the importance of not assuming gender or pronouns. This book gives scenarios of cisgender, transgender, non-binary, and more.

Antiracist Baby

By Ibram X. Kendi, Ashley Lukashevsky (illustrator),

Book cover of Antiracist Baby

Why this book?

The bedrock of inclusivity is understanding our part in systems of oppression. This introduction into actionable antiracist behavior is a must for any parent hoping to truly raise their child to be genuinely inclusive. The page-by-page rhyming helps to engage children, while the glossary in the back gives parents and caregivers real, meaningful discussion points.

C is for Consent

By Eleanor Morrison, Faye Orlove (illustrator),

Book cover of C is for Consent

Why this book?

Approaching the topic of body autonomy, this book tells the story of a boy who gets to choose what he does with his body, which in turn empowers him to respect the body autonomy of others. No more forcing hugs and kisses from friends and family members. When we give our children the tools and the respect to make decisions about their bodies, we allow the space for them to give that same respect to others. 

5 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in pregnancy, body image, and multiculturalism?

5,888 authors have recommended their favorite books and what they love about them. Browse their picks for the best books about pregnancy, body image, and multiculturalism.

Pregnancy Explore 43 books about pregnancy
Body Image Explore 15 books about body image
Multiculturalism Explore 22 books about multiculturalism

And, 3 books we think you will enjoy!

We think you will like Each Kindness, The Rabbit Listened, and When Aidan Became a Brother if you like this list.