It’s graduation time!
First Jojo got his little Kindergarten degree in ABC-ology 😉
And did I mention she’s very smart. Kaitlin graduated with honors earning the Presidential Award (signed by Barack Obama!) for Exceeding all areas CRCT, 4h Award (Vice President) Beta Club Award, Duke Tip Award, Myon 100% Award, Citizenship Award, 25 Book Goal Award and IPassAward.
Kaitlin graduated 5th grade and while she was sad because she’s leaving the familiar to venture into the unknown, she’s ready to be the BIG girl and step up to what middle school has to offer. And that means not only stepping up to her academics — which won’t be an issue– but coming into her own, letting the preaching and teaching I’ve done over the years be her North star and guide her toward being the glorious girl I’ve taught her to be. She knows she’s a diamond, pure and precious and don’t let no knucklehead, dirty scoundrel of a middle-school boy tell you otherwise!
Those kids seem to know more about sex, drugs, molly and meths than the DEA do. There’s peer pressure, bullying and it all leaves a bad taste in my mouth because I don’t want my kids to fall victim to the negativity that can consume them in middle school. I had a rough time when my daughter Kaelani was in middle school. She survived it. But it’s really rough. But that was then and now I know I’m armed with much more information and I’m ready to help Kaitlin navigate the murky middle school waters and I refuse to let middle school be a dark chapter in her bright life.
In a world where Black girls are criticized for their hair, body types and just about everything else, it’s safe to say they need a steady stream of positive reinforcements in all aspects of their lives—including the books they’re exposed to. I chose a few books that have empowerment for girls as it’s underlying theme. And they’re sure to give your girls a boost of self-esteem. So here are 10 books to keep her mind focused and to keep her inspired about who she is and what she has to offer up to the world.
- I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou
- Anne Frank: the Diary of a Young Girl
- Angela’s Ashes by Frank McCourt
- Mufaro’s Beautiful Daughters – John Steptol
- Angel de la Luna and the 5th Glorious Mystery by M. Evelina Galang
- Rookie Yearbook One edited by Tavi Gevenson
- The Ruby in the Smoke by Philip Pullman
- Story of a Girl by Sara Zarr (NOTE: And although I’m a little nervous about this particular book, I’m going to introduce it to Kaitlin to scare her from doing something in middle school she’ll regret. Click the ink to find out about what THIS particular book is about!)
- The Skin I’m In by Sharon G. Flake
- The Collected Poems by Langston Hughes
Any other suggestions? What books would you add to the list for a pre-teen?