“It is critical right now that kids see reflections of themselves throughout their school experience. In the leaders, in the teachers, in the classrooms, in the curriculum, in the books. Not in a tokenized way, but in a real way that makes them feel included and valued and like they belong. I also think it is helpful to allow students to see windows into other worlds, communities and ways of life. It’s a balancing act of making sure that you give them enough to affirm themselves, but a window to what the rest of the world is like. Isn’t that what we’re supposed to be educating them for anyway?”

—Nancy Hanks, Chief of Schools, Madison, Wisconsin

What better way to do this on a daily basis than with the books on your bookshelf. Connecting  with your children and helping them learn about the world around them is crucial. Black and brown children aren’t the only ones who need diverse book collections. The world contains more than one single story….but it might not be apparent to our kids. So many voices aren’t heard, and so many readers feel invisible, even today. Everyone deserves the opportunity to see themselves and their experiences in the media…but it’s not always the case for us brown girls.

If you need a little diversity on your bookshelves, look no further than the monthly subscription service Well Read.

“Look Mommy, that girl has skin like us!”
—My daughter upon opening her first Well Read box.

Well Read Inc. is a company on a mission to promote enhanced literacy in the African-American community by providing exciting and culturally relevant books to children ages 3-12. Their monthly subscription service includes 4-5 books tailored specifically to your child.
This subscription box took my breath away. There were FIVE books with illustrations of little girls that looked just like my daughter. I think it was at that moment that I realized how important is is for me to actively seek out more books that reflect our family.

To order, http://www.iamwellread.com/
One box, which includes 4-5 books, $32.95, www.iamwellread.com/shop

Well Read seeks to be a part of the answer to closing the achievement gap and empowering our children for a bright future. It’s important that we work together to tackle this issue, therefore, with every paid one-year subscription, a subscription is donated to a child in a low-income household.


Nia Lawrence has over 10 years of experience working as an Art Director at some of the top magazinesin New York City. She was responsible for creating visual content for companies such as Real Simple, Latina, Redbook, Women's Health, Martha Stewart Living, Suede and Victoria's Secret.. ​ Brooklyn, NY is home to the mom of one who currently runs the Nia Lawrence Design Studio, a print and digital marketing company.

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