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Animal Rights & Habitat Loss
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Animal rights and habitat loss
Obvs, you’re gonna raise your kids to recognize and call in racially coded animal characters. That won’t be hard. But bringing it back to tangible things we can do as families, it’s pretty easy to spin love of animals into concern for them and raise enthusiastic animal rights activists.
There are many very boring books about animal rights. These are not those. These are the interesting ones that engage kids and get them fired up about the connection between habitat conservation, animal rights, and environmentalism.
- Aquicorn Cove (it’s the ocean – but the ocean is a forest for coral!)
- A Boy and A Jaguar (try not to cry!)
- The Lumberjack’s Beard (redemptive!)
- Spring After Spring (oh, so that’s why Rachel Carson was a big deal!)
- What if Sharks Disappeared (alarming!)
- The Lady and the Spider (riveting!)
- Sea Bear (age-appropriately devastating and a little stressful!)
- Tokyo Digs A Garden (pro-apocalyptic!)
- Science Comics: Trees, Kings of the Forest (hilarious!)
- Talk with kids about the importance of not just protecting giant pandas from extinction, but also the importance of protecting their entire species ecosystem.
- Turns out prioritizing pandas ’cause of their cuteness is a band-aid fix – one that ultimately harms the entire ecosystem they live in. If kids have a hard time grasping why we need to rescue the Asiatic Black Bear to save pandas, read If Sharks Disappeared to give them a sense of how all species are interdependent on each other.
- Aaaand bringing it back around – we’re only a short hop into revisiting our discussions from International Women’s Day above. Discuss how over-representation of white American women’s stories during Women’s History Month erases and dismisses the contributions of Black, Indigenous, and women of color around the world.
See what we did that? Talking with kids is fun!
- Research an at-risk animal or bug local to you.
- Find out what you can do to reduce and rebuild to support animals endangered by habitat loss, pollution, and general human asshattery.
More resources to dig deeper:
- Panda Stories That DO NOT Panda-Code Asians as Perpetual Foreigners (Isn’t it just pathetic that this has to be a curated list? And that it’s such a short list?)
- Normalizing (not tokenizing!) Asian & Pacific Islander Characters in Kidlit
- #OwnVoices Asian & Pacific Islander Kidlit
- #OwnVoices Chinese American Kids Stories
- Inspiring Kids To Learn About Animal Rights & Anti-Speciesism