Weekend Reads: Modeling Respect and Inclusion in Schools, Books for Activist Kids, and Movie Playgrounds?

Happy Weekend Readers. It’s the 12th of March and the Girl Scouts are celebrating their 104th birthday. I’ll take 2 boxes of Do-si-do’s please.

Whilst the Trump Justice Department pulls back from Obama era steps towards protecting transgender students, Hawaii has stepped up to be more inclusive and respectful,  a legacy of the state’s progressive traditions as well as it’s Polynesian roots.

Speaking of respect and inclusion, Marvel Comics has stepped up as well, hiring queer Latina writer Gabby Rivera to write the adventures of queer Latina superhero America Chavez.

If you are like me you listen to a lot of podcasts. But how many of them can you listen to with your kids? Fatherly recommends 15 great podcasts for kids and adults to share. 

Are your kids interested in activism in our tumultuous times? Do you wish they were? Here are the best books for raising activist kids. 

Are your kids feeling overwhelmed by our tumultuous times? Deborah Heitner  writes about what to do when the news intrudes…

Many of today’s parents watched or read the news with their own parents. Increasingly, as our kids get old enough to have phones and social media, or to simply be near them, they will see news in their social networks. And while news media might give more context to what kids are seeing, there are many more new outlets now, of varying quality. We need to teach our children to be discerning consumers of news.

The media environment can be a treacherous place for kids. From political news that’s hard to process to unedited violence on YouTube, it can be challenging for adults to handle. Imagine what it’s like for kids. Not to mention that the sheer media information load is staggering, with the barrage of new outlets that are always on, always competing for attention, and seemingly multiplying by the week.

Holy crap! During a dispute about driving in the school pick up zone, a Texas Mom pulls a gun on a fellow Mom.  Because Texas…

We really like the Scary Mommy blog, so our hearts go out to founder Jill Smokler and her husband Jeff as they navigate a divorce after revealing the long held secret that Jeff is gay. 

How should we teach children about history when that history is contested? 

Patton Oswalt is back on the stand up stage after a tough year following the sudden death of his wife, writer Michelle McNamara last spring. He opened up to NPR last week about how popular culture gets grieving all wrong.

Bruce Wayne saw his parents gunned down in front of him when he was 9 and he travels the world and becomes this amazing [crime fighter]. … That’s ridiculous — he would have grown up to have been Gotham City’s most annoying slam poet. That’s what Bruce Wayne would have been. He would have been up there reading his horrible poems.

Speaking of Batman, being raised by the butler did turn him into a monster.

A 5 and 1/2 year old girl has dictated a letter to the Gap… 

Dear Gap,

My name is Alice Jacob and I am almost 5½ years old. I like cool shirts like Superman and Batman shirts and race car shirts, too. All your girl shirts are pink and princesses and stuff like that. The boys’ shirts are really cool. They have Superman, Batman, rock-and-roll and sports. What about girls who like those things like me, and my friend Olivia?

Can you make some cool girls’ shirts please? Or, can you make a ‘no boys or girls’ section — only a kids’ section?

Thank you,

Alice Jacob

The rate of child marriages in the US is STAGGERING.

Sue the T-Rex at the Field Museum in Chicago has her own Twitter Feed. And she’s running a D&D game on it. 

I have no opinion on this last story… but everyone else on the internet seems to have one. So let’s argue about the wisdom of putting a playground in the movie theater!

Here’s the latest development on the cutest creature in the universe Fiona, the Cincinnati Zoo’s brand new baby hippo!

Featured Image Credit: WCPO in Cincinnati

Louis Doench

Lou Doench is a 52 year old father of three. Twelve years ago he married the coolest woman in the world and gave up the lucrative career of being a photography student to become a stay at home husband and Dad, or SAHD. An atheist geek, or a geeky atheist if you prefer, Lou likes reading, photography, video gaming, disc golf, baseball and Dr. Who. He has been playing Dungeons and Dragons since 1976. Born and raised in Cincinnati, Ohio. He is also an excellent home cook, not that his children would know because they only eat Mac & Cheese. Follow Lou on Twitter @blotzphoto or check out his photography at

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