#365PictureBooks Day 40 I am Jazz by Jessica Herthel & Jazz Jennings

Read this article from the NZ Herald and watch the Mum’s video before reading this post. We need to think about how we can support all kids in our schools.

The story of a transgender child based on the real-life experience of Jazz Jennings, who has become a spokesperson for transkids everywhere

This is an essential tool for parents and teachers to share with children whether those kids identify as trans or not. I wish I had had a book like this when I was a kid struggling with gender identity questions. I found it deeply moving in its simplicity and honesty.”—Laverne Cox (who plays Sophia in “Orange Is the New Black”)

From the time she was two years old, Jazz knew that she had a girl’s brain in a boy’s body. She loved pink and dressing up as a mermaid and didn’t feel like herself in boys’ clothing. This confused her family, until they took her to a doctor who said that Jazz was transgender and that she was born that way. Jazz’s story is based on her real-life experience and she tells it in a simple, clear way that will be appreciated by picture book readers, their parents, and teachers“. Publisher.

“We understand now. Be who you are. We love you no matter what.”

How I wish every transgender child had parents as accepting and loving as the parents of Jazz Jennings. This is a book I think every school librarian should at least be aware of, or have available for the parent curious about whether their child is transgender and for the child who needs positive affirmation that everything is OK and they are not alone. I’d like to think it could be used to help other children become more empathetic.

Bibliographic details:

I am Jazz / Written by Jessica Herthel and Jazz Jennings, pictures by Shelagh McNicholas.

Published by Dial Books for Young Readers, 2014.

32 pages.

ISBN:9780803741072

I borrowed this copy from Auckland Libraries.

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