Books & Beyond

Celebrating Native American Heritage with Picture Books

By Lisa T.
October 27, 2021

Within the pages of these books, you will find diverse perspectives on the contemporary Indigenous experience.  With over 500 Federally recognized  American Indian tribes and Alaska Native villages, there is not a single Native American story, rather there are many stories. 

I Sang you Down from the Stars by Tasha Spillett-Sumner; illustrated by Michaela Goade.
As she waits for the arrival of her new baby, a mother-to-be gathers gifts that will offer her new baby connection to tradition and family. 

Fry Bread: A Native American Family Story by Kevin Noble Maillard (Seminole Nation, McKusukey band)
xplores Native American heritage, dispels stereotypes, and depicts contemporary Indian family life and culture through the lens of fry bread.

We All Play by Julie Flett (Cree-Metis)
This beautiful book celebrates playtime and the connection between children and the natural world in Cree and English.

When we are Kind by Monique Gray Smith, illustrated by Nicole Neidhardt (Diné)
Spare illustrations and text remind us that when we are kind, we are grateful and aware of our interconnectedness.

Bow Wow Pow Wow by Brenda J. Child (Red Lake Ojibwe)
Join Windy Girl and her dog, Itchy boy, as they attend a powwow, where they watch the dancers, eat tasty foods, and join family and friends around the campfire.

First laugh: Welcome, Baby!  by Rose Tahe and Nancy Bo Flood; illustrated by Jonathan Nelson.
A Navaho family welcomes a new baby into the family with love and ceremony, eagerly waiting for that first special laugh.

Johnny’s Pheasant by Cheryl Minema (Ojibwe), illustrated by Julie Flett (Cree-Metis)
Johnny spies a pheasant which he believes is sleeping and his Grandma fears is dead, but they learn they were both wrong when the pheasant departs, leaving behind a gift.

We are Water Protectors by Carole Lindstrom, illustrated by Michaela Goade
Inspired by indigenous-led movements across North America, this book calls upon us to protect and respect our earth and water.