Race Cars is a children’s book about white privilege. It was created to serve as a springboard for parents and educators to facilitate tough conversations with their kids about race, privilege and oppression. Race Cars tells the story of 2 best friends, a white car and a black car, that have different experiences and face different rules while entering the same race.
*Updated version now includes discussion guide and questions to help parents and educators facilitate conversations with children.
Why is this book important?
As early as 6 months, a baby’s brain can notice race-based differences, by ages 2 to 4, children can internalize racial bias and start assigning meaning to race. 5 to 8-year-olds begin to place value judgments on similarities and differences. By age 12 children have a complete set of stereotypes about every racial, ethnic, and religious group in society. Our guidance is especially crucial during this impressionable time. Race Cars offers a simplistic, yet powerful way to introduce these complicated themes to our children and is a worthy addition to classroom and home libraries.
About the author and illustrator
Jenny Devenny, LMSW is a Clinical Social Worker living and practicing in Brooklyn, New York. She has experience providing mental health services in the NYC public school system to clients of all ages and backgrounds. She is currently working as a child and adolescent therapist through Thrive NYC, an initiative to bring free mental health services to NYC’s most underserved communities. In addition to her clinical work, Jenny facilitates groups and workshops for both educators and students on racism, privilege and oppression.
Prior to becoming involved in mental health care, Jenny had a career in graphic design and illustration and is thrilled to have had the opportunity to combine her backgrounds and passions to create RACE CARS.