Imagine the Possibilities

Concurrent Program Session

We Stories: Using Children’s Literature to Discuss Race

Thursday, March 22, 2018, 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM

Pennsylvania Convention Center, 111 AB

Research of family habits indicates that the vast majority of white families rarely, if ever, talk about race at home. By age five, children see race as a major point of difference or distinction, even when it is not discussed. However, more exposure to other racial groups, even through children’s books, helps to counteract bias and discrimination. Learn how the collaboration between the non-profit and the public library evolved and the results of this collaboration.

At the end of this session, participants will:

1: Understand a unique community partnership that gives parents and particularly white families the tools to talk to their children about race and racism 2: Be aware of resources to begin or increase their library's collection of We Stories literature 3: Learn of ways to connect like-minded families within their community

The session organizer(s) identified this session as appropriate for:
Level 1: People with no previous knowledge of the topic.

This session will have: Low interaction (example: single speaker/panel with Q&A at the end of the program)

Handouts: Download 1  

Track: Collaborate

Tags: Serving Youth, Children's Literature, Diversity, Family Engagement, Inclusion, Social Change, Youth Services


Kristen Sorth, Library Director
St. Louis County Library , St. Louis , MO

Kristen Sorth is St. Louis County Library?s first female director. Under her leadership, the Library District has received numerous accolades-including a What's Right with the Region award in 2016 and having St. Louis County Library named the 2014 Missouri Library of the Year. In addition to her other duties, she leads the library's ongoing building and expansion program. This building plan is a renovation or replacement of the all of the library?s 20 facilities.

Adelaide Lancaster, We Stories Co-Founder and Director of Community and Collaboration
We Stories , St. Louis , MO

Adelaide Lancaster is a co-founder of We Stories, a St. Louis based nonprofit that engages white families in racial justice efforts. Adelaide?s interest in studying racism began at Colgate University. She continued her studies at Columbia University where she pursued a M.A. in Organizational Psychology and a M.Ed. in Counseling Psychology, and focused on racial identity development and group dynamics. She has spent most of her professional life as an entrepreneur, community builder and advocate.

Laura Horwitz, We Stories Co-Founder and Executive Director
We Stories , St. Louis , MO

Laura is the co-founder and Executive Director of We Stories which helps families strengthen conversations about race. She has 15 years of experience designing, implementing, and evaluating social justice programs. Previously, she launched the organizational learning function at American Friends Service Committee, conducted policy research at The Pew Charitable Trusts, and worked as a congregation-based community organizer. Laura received her B.A. from Tufts University and her M.A. in Organizational Psychology from Columbia University.

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