Sep 212016

bfb_facebook_bfbofchildrenrelease_new1_960x960px_0816_nodate  A few months ago, I published an essay in the Ties column at The New York Times called A Poster Family for Diversity. Soon after, I got an email from Nancy Traversy, Co-founder and CEO of Barefoot Books. Knowing I was interested in promoting diversity and inclusivity, Nancy asked me to help spread the word about her company’s latest release, The Barefoot Book of Children. Since the world desparately needs more diverse books, I said yes — and I’m giving away a copy here on my blog!

My own kids are teenagers well past the picture book stage, but The Barefoot Book of Children is the kind of book I would have bought as a gift for their elementary classrooms as well as for our home library. The text by Tessa Strickland and Kate DePalma communicates that differences in appearance, beliefs, and lifestyles among people are interesting and positive, and the colorful illustrations by David Dean are gorgeous! Here’s one of my favorite pages:


In an election season that feels especially contentious, we need to talk with our kids  more than ever about understanding and respecting others to help counteract the divisiveness and uncertainty that’s in the air. This book is perfect for sparking conversations about cultural understanding, diversity, and inclusion at home and in the classroom.

Founded almost 25 years ago by two young mothers in England, Barefoot Books has published more that 600 titles for children that encourage discovery, compassion, creativity and global awareness. In fact, Barefoot’s Mama Panya’s Pancakes was a big storytime favorite for my kids back in the day. I’m buying a copy of The Barefoot Book of Children for my infant niece, but maybe you’ll win your copy!

To enter, answer the following question in the comments:

Why do you think diverse books are important and meaningful for children?

To earn additional entries, please do the following:

Leave a separate comment for each one, to be sure I correctly record and credit all your entries!

1. Sign up for updates from my website by clicking the menu bar (or let me know if you signed up previously.) This delivers my blog posts to your inbox. I won’t share your email address with anyone else.

2. Follow me on Twitter @sharonvanepps and tweet about this giveaway: “#diversebooks Giveaway-Win a copy of The Barefoot Book of Children from @BarefootBooks & @sharonvanepps Enter at

3. Like my Facebook page at Sharon Van Epps, Writer (or let me know if we’re already connected there)

4. Blog about the giveaway or post on your Facebook page, and link back here. Be sure to post your blog entry before you comment.


This giveaway will be closed Tuesday, September 27 at 11 p.m., and the winner will be announced Wednesday, September 28!

 Posted by at 12:26 am

  16 Responses to “Enter to win a copy of The Barefoot Book of Children, New from Barefoot Books!”

  1. Diverse books are crucial to help expand childrens’ worldview and to teach empathy

  2. I believe by registering on your site I signed up for emails 🙂

  3. Already followed on Twitter plus tweeted giveaway 🙂

  4. Diverse books help children to understand other cultures and grow up to be accepting of those who are different from them.

  5. I subscribed to updates

  6. Books that show/teach diversity are so important to children of all ages. They help to give a strong foundation of understanding that our planet is full of people of all colors (etc.) They can help teach compassion and respect for all people.

  7. I’ve signed up for Updates.

  8. I followed you on twitter and tweeted about giveaway. 🙂

  9. I follow you on Facebook.

  10. I shared your contest post on my Facebook. <3

  11. Diversity is important to ALL of us in this world we live

  12. I teach young children and I have seen how important diversity is, for a child to see a picture in a book that they can relate to themselves. Teaches them that they are important and how important other children who may be different then them are. I love your book and I have been following you on facebook.

  13. Diverse books tell kids that everyone has a meaningful place in the world.

  14. To help children see how we are all the same, feel the same feelings, want the same things. To close the gap between what we see as different!

  15. Learning about diversity builds empathy, which is one of the greatest lessons for all children to learn for our world

  16. Liked on Facebook

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