MISelf in Books

Community Read Aloud and Discussion Program: BPS Libraries

Conversations in a Diverse World: The Power of Story

The Birmingham Public Schools Library Media Department is pleased to invite our community on a journey into the world of story. We hope to share with our community some of the diverse content in our libraries and how it impacts the way we walk in this world.


We are inviting you to listen to a read-aloud and participate in a discussion of a selection of books chosen from the MISelf in Books list.


The books on this list were selected by a committee formed by the Michigan Association for Media in Education (MAME). MAME and the BPS Media Specialists recognize the challenges we face in combatting bias and racism in our communities and the power of literature in disrupting bias and racism while building empathy for others. These books are available in all of our BPS library media centers--and they are also books that students enthusiastically enjoy!


Therefore, we would like to introduce these books and offer opportunities for discussion of these texts. We are suggesting three ways you can use this time.


  1. Join as a family for listening and discussion.
  2. Join as caregivers to preview these books before sharing with your children.
  3. Join as caregivers to gain experience in discussing the themes presented in these books.


We are planning to host this event weekly on Thursdays 7-7:30 PM excepting school scheduled holidays.

Group Norms for Our Read-Alouds and Discussions

As we discuss thoughts related to the books shared in the company of both students and adults, please use these thoughts to guide your participation:

  • Open Mind, Open Heart
  • Engage in Self-Awareness
  • Keep Good Intentions
  • Withhold Assumptions and Judgement
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MISelf in Books: The Arabic Quilt: An Immigrant Story by Aya Khalil

Thursday, April 15th, 7-7:30pm

This is an online event.

MAME Description:


Kanzi wraps herself in the beautiful Arabic quilt her teita (grandma) in Cairo gave her and writes a poem in Arabic about the quilt. Her teacher sees the poem and gets the entire class excited about creating a “quilt” (a paper collage) of their names in Arabic.


We will meet from 7:00-7:30 PM via zoom. Please register for this event below.


We will send the zoom link to the email address you register with on the afternoon of April 15, 2021.

RSVPs are enabled for this event.

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MISelf in Books: Hair Love by Matthew A. Cherry

Thursday, April 22nd, 7-7:30pm

This is an online event.

MAME Description:



Zuri’s hair has a mind of its own. It kinks, coils, and curls every which way. Zuri knows it’s beautiful. When Daddy steps in to style it, he has a lot to learn. But he LOVES his Zuri, and he’ll do anything to make her happy.


We will meet from 7:00-7:30 PM via zoom. Please register for this event below.


We will send the zoom link to the email address you register with on the afternoon of April 22, 2021.

RSVPs are enabled for this event.

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MISelf in Books: Fry Bread: A Native American Family Story by Keith Noble Maillard

Thursday, April 29th, 7-7:30pm

This is an online event.

MAME Description:


Told in lively and powerful verse Fry Bread is a depiction of a modern Native American family. Fry bread is food. Fry bread is time. Fry bread is nation. Fry bread is us.


We will meet from 7:00-7:30 PM via zoom. Please register for this event below.


We will send the zoom link to the email address you register with on the afternoon of April 29, 2021.

RSVPs are enabled for this event.

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MISelf in Books: Just Ask! Be Different, Be Brave, Be You by Sonia Sotomayor

Thursday, May 6th, 7-7:30pm

This is an online event.

MAME Description:


In Just Ask, children with all sorts of challenges are represented. As the kids work together to build a community garden, asking questions of each other along the way, this book encourages readers to do the same.


We will meet from 7:00-7:30 PM via zoom. Please register for this event below.


We will send the zoom link to the email address you register with on the afternoon of May 6, 2021.

RSVPs are enabled for this event.

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MISelf in Books: 'Ohana Means Family by Ilima Loomis

Thursday, May 13th, 7-7:30pm

This is an online event.

MAME Description:

Join the family, or ohana, as they farm taro for poi to prepare for a traditional luau celebration.


We will meet from 7:00-7:30 PM via zoom. Please register for this event below.


We will send the zoom link to the email address you register with on the afternoon of May 13, 2021.

RSVPs are enabled for this event.

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MISelf in Books: Sumo Joe by Mia Wenjen

Thursday, May 20th, 7-7:30pm

This is an online event.

MAME Description:


Sumo Joe is a gentle big brother to his little sister. He and his friends are also sumo wrestlers. They observe sumo’s ultimate rule: no girls allowed! When Sumo Joe’s little sister wants to join the fun, Sumo Joe is torn between sumo, and being a big brother.


We will meet from 7:00-7:30 PM via zoom. Please register for this event below.


We will send the zoom link to the email address you register with on the afternoon of May 20, 2021.

RSVPs are enabled for this event.

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MISelf in Books: The Proudest Blue: A Story of Hijab and Family by Ibtihaj Muhammad

Thursday, May 27th, 7-7:30pm

This is an online event.

MAME Description:

With her new backpack and light-up shoes, Faizah knows the first day of school is going to be special. It's the start of a brand new year and, best of all, it's her older sister Asiya's first day of hijab.


We will meet from 7:00-7:30 PM via zoom. Please register for this event below.


We will send the zoom link to the email address you register with on the afternoon of May 27, 2021.

RSVPs are enabled for this event.

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MISelf in Books: Bilal Cooks Daal by Aisha Saeed

Thursday, June 3rd, 7-7:30pm

This is an online event.

MAME Description:


Six-year-old Bilal is excited to help his dad make his favorite food of all-time: daal! The slow-cooked lentil dish from South Asia requires lots of ingredients and a whole lot of waiting. Bilal wants to introduce his friends to daal. They’ve never tried it!


We will meet from 7:00-7:30 PM via zoom. Please register for this event below.


We will send the zoom link to the email address you register with on the afternoon of June 3, 2021.

RSVPs are enabled for this event.

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MISelf in Books: Priya Dreams of Marigolds & Masala by Meenal Patel

Thursday, June 10th, 7-7:30pm

This is an online event.

MAME Description:


Priya Dreams of Marigolds & Masala is a celebration of the special bond between grandparents and grandchildren, the threads that connect each of us to our heritage, and the power of sharing our traditions with others.


We will meet from 7:00-7:30 PM via zoom. Please register for this event below.


We will send the zoom link to the email address you register with on the afternoon of June 10, 2021.

RSVPs are enabled for this event.

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Book Sales at "The Book Beat"

If you are interested in purchasing any of the titles shared throughout this program we have partnered with our local independent book store, The Book Beat who offers curbside pick-up and ship to home options. All titles can purchased through the store with a 15% discount to BPS families. Please refer to The Book Beat web page for details.