June 17, 2020 / News & Blog

Museum Resources for Talking about Racism with Children

Please contact ACM to add your children’s museum’s resources to this list.

Demonstrations continue to unfold around the world calling for an end to racist systems that oppress Black people and people of color. As institutions with a responsibility to the children and families in their communities, children’s museums are sharing tools to help families navigate difficult conversations about race and racism—including these resource guides:

6 Books That Can Help You Talk to Your Child about Race and Diversity
The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis (IN)

“We believe in the power of children to change the world around us. We cannot raise world-changers if we shy away from tough topics. We hope these books may empower children and their grown-ups to address these challenging topics with sensitivity and compassion, empowering children to make a difference in our communities—no matter how young.”

Anti-Racism Resources
National Children’s Museum (Washington, DC)

“For parents, for kids, for educators, and for all dreamers.”

Mourning and Making Meaningful Change
Minnesota Children’s Museum (St. Paul)

“We want to support kids and families as we find a path forward to unite, heal, and make meaningful change toward a just future where everyone in our community and throughout the world is treated with kindness, dignity and respect.”

Racial Equity Resources
Marbles Kids Museum (Raleigh, NC)

“Marbles believes in the power of play to unite communities around building bright futures for children. We believe in the power of play to break down barriers, celebrate diversity, and foster friendships. These beliefs shape our commitment to help a community shaken by unrest and racial inequity that impacts us all.”

Resources for Talking about Race and Equality
Children’s Museums of Pittsburgh and MuseumLab (PA)

“Racism and prejudice have a profound impact on children and families in Pittsburgh and across the world. We must teach our children to be kind and compassionate to everyone. We are all neighbors.”

Social Justice
Glazer Children’s Museum (Tampa, FL)

“We have created a page on our website filled with free resources for families about racism, trauma, violence, and the historic context of activism. This is just our small piece of the puzzle. To the black and brown families in our community – we are here for you. We will help you help your children through this.”

Talking to Children About Race (from Play Is Essential Work: A Parenting Guide)
The Peoria PlayHouse Children’s Museum (IL)
“Conversations about racial justice must start at home. Parents bear the responsibility of educating their children about race and racial injustice, no matter how difficult that conversation may seem to be. Your children are not too young to have a conversation about race. Below are some resources to start that conversation.”

Talking to Your Child about Race
Pretend City Children’s Museum (Irvine, CA)
“Children as young as infants can recognize differences in their appearances. As they explore the world around them, they begin to form their identity in relation to others. It is never too early to start having conversations that address the differences they see. Here are four ways you and your family can introduce race conversations to your child.”

What To Say When There Are No Words
Boston Children’s Museum and Children’s Services of Roxbury

“At this moment, we need to keep our children close and show them our ever-present unconditional love. Even the youngest children have a keen sense of fairness and right and wrong so we can talk to them honestly about justice in a way that is appropriate for their age and stage of development.”

The Associations of Children’s Museums (ACM) champions children’s museums worldwide. Follow ACM on TwitterFacebook, and Instagram.