Disability Represented in Children's Literature


  • Hannah Schoonover Kansas State University




Children search for representations of themselves in the literature they read. However, disabilities are not always portrayed accurately or positively in children's literature. Disabilities should be included in children's literature because children will be exposed to disabilities in their lifetime, whether personally, at home, or at school. Moreover, it is imperative that children read works where disabilities are positively portrayed. Therefore, this paper describes five children's books and explains how they positively portray disabilities and some of the authors' personal experiences with disabilities. These books include Moses Goes to a Concert by Isaac Millman, Why Does Izzy Cover Her Ears? Dealing with Sensory Overload by Jennifer Veenendall, The Seeing Stick by Jane Yolen, Red: A Crayon's Story by Michael Hill, and We'll Paint the Octopus Red by Stephanie Stuve-Bodeen. These books bring advocacy and awareness to disabilities in a positive, child-friendly way. They do not portray disabilities as something that needs to be fixed, but rather bring appreciation to the lives the characters live.






Reflective Essays