One of the best parts of my job is getting to collaborate with amazing companies like Indigo on campaigns like #indigobooksbeforebed. We were chosen to share our favorite kid’s books by Indigenous authors that you are going to love reading to your children.
As you guys know I am Aboriginal and I grew up on a reservation in Ontario. Growing up one of my most cherished memories is when my mom read to my sister and me before bed. It was how she taught us about our culture, traditions, and the world around us. We learned about Nanabush, the Raven who stole the sun and so many others. One of the most amazing things about our culture is the stories we share from generation to generation. Which means many of the stories I’ve heard before they were written.
So the other day we went to visit my parents, and we sat down to share some of our favorite kid’s books by Indigenous authors.
Kid’s books from Indigenous Authors
This beautiful bedtime poem is the sweetest Inuit story. It was actually written by Celina who is an Inuit throat singer. It’s told by a mother speaking to her little baby Kulu, which is a word that means “your sweet-loving baby”. Penelope loves the animals and seeing the books illustrations. I think this would make a wonderful baby shower gift.
This book is one of our other favourites from an Inuit writer. It tells a story of a grandma taking her two grandkids out for a fishing trip on the lake. She shows them how to successfully fish from the clothes they need to wear, how to make the holes and so much more. It’s a great story to read any child.
This is a story similar to one my mom used to tell to me as a child. It’s another beautiful story that teaches children about nature and animals. Reading the title you would assume its a scary book like Little Red Riding Hood, but it’s not at all! Trust me this one is a favourite of mine.
I recently read this at Indigo one day, and I couldn’t stop thinking about it. I actually bought it before I wrote this post because I wanted to share a bit more with you. This book is a very important book to read to our children, it tells a story of residential School and it honestly reminds me so much of my grandfather who also went to residential school. There is so much darkness in our Canadian History and this is an important one to read.
Another one of our kid’s books by Indigenous authors that feels very close to home is written by Danielle Daniel. It teaches young children about our Anishinaabe traditions and our totem animals like deer, beaver, and moose. It’s actually one of the books that my cousin’s helped me choose for this blog post, and I’m so happy we did because it’s a really good read.
I love anything Robert Munch and combined with a talented storyteller like Micheal Kasugak and you get a book as great as this one. I actually remember reading it a few years ago and it has stuck with me ever since. It’s on our list of books to add to our own personal library and I did want to note that this book is also offered in Inuktitut! I love it because it’s important to focus on learning indigenous languages, and I think books do a great job of teaching our young children.
I wanted to include this Cree book, telling of a young girl and her special relationship with her grandfather. It’s another book that hits very close to home and reminds me so much of my relationship with my own grandpa. The deeper meaning behind Stolen Words is the history of residential schools and the intergenerational impact they had on our indigenous peoples.
I had to include this one because I remember not only my mom telling this story but also our Ingenious teachers. I remember sitting in elementary school listening to the stories of the raven, and how cunning and smart he was. Such a good story and I recommend it to anyone who wants to teach their children a bit about our culture and listen to our Ojibway stories.
So I hope we have inspired you to add some indigenous authors to your own books before bed list! I know our own book list is always growing especially as I find more and more amazing new books at Indigo Kids. Again I am so grateful to be able to share a little of my culture with you and also a big thank you to Indigo Kids for sponsoring 8 kid’s books by indigenous authors.1