Meet Jabari Asim, author of WHOSE TOES ARE THOSE?

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OurShelves is your trusted resource for expert-curated diverse kids' books along with additional resources to deepen engagement with the books and topics they raise.

Book cover of WHOSE TOES ARE THOSE?In this blog post, you'll find:
  • A video from Jabari Asim, author of WHOSE TOES ARE THOSE?;
  • Ways to engage your infants and toddlers with Jabari's book; and 
  • Advocacy actions you can take with your children as they get older to support diverse books and their creators amid unprecedented book bans targeting diverse books and their creators.


    Enjoy this special video from Jabari Asim, Author of WHOSE TOES ARE THOSE?!

    In this video, author Jabari Asim shares behind-the-scenes background about OurShelves book selection, WHOSE TOES ARE THOSE?. Learn who inspired Jabari to write this book and why he became a writer. What rhymes, songs, and sayings do you have in your family?

    Tip for Engaging Infants and Toddlers While Reading: 

    Remember that pointing to, asking questions about, and being playful about what you're seeing in the pictures in a board book is a wonderful way to make your reading time more engaging! Below are some examples to try out. (No need to try them all in one reading as attention spans can be short in these younger years:), but as you re-read the book again and again, see what pages, pictures, and interactions are most engaging for your little one.)

    • Look at these toes! (while pointing to toes)
    • How many toes do you see? Let's count them together! (Counting toes slowly by pointing to each one)
    • Do you see a cat? (Pointing to cat) What do cats say? "Meow"
    • I wonder who's hiding under that bucket! (Pointing to bucket) What color is that bucket? Green! :) (Perhaps play some fun peek-a-boo or hide-and-seek with this book hiding your or your little one's nose or toes too!)
    • Enjoy playing "This little piggy" along with the book while tickling your children's toes (if they enjoy tickles)!

    Engage your children in taking action!

    Unprecedented book bans that disproportionally target racially, ethnically and religiously diverse, LGBTQ+, and other under-represented characters, authors, and illustrators are on the rise. (Learn more from PEN America and Get Ready, Stay Ready.) 

    Here are 5 concrete actions you and your children can take to proactively support diverse books and their creators:

    1. Buy and borrow diverse books like WHOSE TOES ARE THOES?;
    2. Share this book and this video within your family, classrooms, library, and beyond (on Facebook, Instagram, and Threads);
    3. Send a note to Jabari Asim to share why this special book matters to you;
    4. Follow your favorite authors and illustrators of diverse books, like author Jabari Asim (on Instagram and his website) and illustrator LeUyen Pham (on Instagram);
    5. Leave a short review for WHOSE TOES ARE THOSE? and other favorite diverse books on Goodreads and Amazon.
    Visit our Advocacy page for more ways to take action!
    Join our e-list. Join the movement. FIRST access to NEW resources + NEW products. FREE videos, activities, guides, how to's.