‘The world needs more respect, love, curiosity, and acceptance’

Kids holding art

Krista Soli Foster always imagined “going on a pilgrimage” to different centers of worship with her daughter, learning about their core values. She wants to model respect, love, curiosity, and acceptance for Lydia, age 6, who is being allowed to make up her own mind about faith and religion.  “Then I started to think, ‘Why … Read more

Find yourself in a book

Book covers for The Treasure of Maria Mamoun by Chalfoun, Michelle, Sittings Secrets by Naomi Shihab Nye, Honeybee by Naomi Shihab Nye, Yaffa and Fatima Shalom Salaam by Fawzia Gilani-Williams, Lailah's Lunchbox by Reem Faruqi, Poppies of Iraq by Brigitte Findakly, The Turtle of Oman by Naomi Shihab Nye, Saving Sky by Diane Stanley

Every year, our librarians review all our curated reading lists for kids and families, making sure we’re intentionally including books that represent diversity in race and ethnicity, gender, disability and neurodivergence, and more.  One recent addition: Arab Heritage Reads, a list with fiction, nonfiction, and picture books by Arab and Arab-American authors and illustrators. Some are … Read more

May is Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month

Book covers for Save Me a Seat by Sarah Weeks and Gita Varadarajan, Lost Boys by Darcey Rosenblatt, Inside Out & Back Again by Thanhha Lai, The Land of Forgotten Girls by Erin Entrada Kelly, Bee-bim bop! By Linda Sue Park, Hush! A Thai Lullaby by Minfong Ho, Sakura's Cherry Blossoms by Robert Paul Weston, Mela and the Elephant by Dow Phumiruk

A celebration of Asians and Pacific Islanders in the United States, this commemorative month pays “tribute to the generations of Asian and Pacific Islanders who have enriched America’s history and are instrumental in its future success,” according to the Library of Congress website, asianpacificheritage.gov. Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month was established by Congress to mark the … Read more

A celebration of culture

A celebration of Holi

Last month we enjoyed sharing stories, creating, and discovering more about the Hindu spring festival Holi at Dole Branch Library! During the event, kids created a craft and learned more about Holi, also known as the “festival of colors” and the “festival of love,” through the Multicultural Collection. Mark your calendars for upcoming events featuring … Read more

More Than a Month widens the lens in 2019

The Color of Art still

It started as a way to celebrate the black experience all year long, and not just during Black History Month. Now, almost 36 months later, the library’s More Than a Month series kicks off its fourth year with an expanded outlook and programs that promote conversation and year-round enrichment for all. ‘It’s both/and’ More Than … Read more

Celebrate diverse cultures

Children coloring and making crafts at a Holi celebration

Join us this winter—and all year round—for activities that can help foster empathy in our community. On Wednesday, December 12, discover world holidays through crafts, games, books and artifacts from the Multicultural Collection at Holidays Around the World from 4 to 5 pm at Dole Branch Library. And join members of the community to celebrate Kwanzaa, a celebration … Read more

Women and gender in Islam

Understanding the World of Islam

By Maliha Chishti Dr. Maliha Chishti is a researcher specializing in war and post-conflict peacebuilding and a Lecturer at the Harris School of Public Policy. On Wednesday, October 3, she joins us at the Main Library at 7 pm as part of the ongoing series Understanding the World of Islam, presented in partnership with the … Read more

Tools for talking about race with kids

Book Covers: Uprooting Racism: How White People Can Work for Racial Justice by Paul Kivel, So You Want To Talk About Race By Ijeoma Oluo, Raising White Kids: Bringing Up Children by Jennifer Harvey, Blind Spot: Hidden Biases of Good People by Mahzarin R. Banaji and Anthony G. Greenwald, Up! How Families Around the World Carry Their Little Ones by Susan Hughes, Skin Again by Bell Hooks, We Came to America by Faith Ringgold

Last year, the founder of local Facebook group Raising Race Conscious Kids in and around Oak Park reached out to us. Although she had been raised to be “color-blind,” Andrea Kovach wrote, she is raising her 3- and 6-year-olds differently because “research has shown that instead of dismantling structural racism, that way of parenting just … Read more

High school hosting America to Me viewings

Still of four teens in a huddle from STARZ America to Me Documentary

Library live-streaming canceled; join us at OPRF Three years ago, Academy Award-nominated director Steve James filmed a year in the life of a dozen Oak Park and River Forest High School students. Due to overwhelming response and limited resources, we have canceled our plans to live-stream at the library. Please join us at Oak Park and … Read more

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