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Image credit: A House For Everyone

'A House For Everyone' book teaches and celebrates gender acceptance for children

September 11, 2018

As the new school year begins, GLAAD is highlighting kids and family resources that accelerate acceptance for LGBTQ people. Jo Hirst’s recent children’s book, A House For Everyone, offers an inclusive perspective on teaching children about gender expression, gender identity, and gender acceptance. Hirst, a former primary teacher based in Melbourne, is an active advocate, supporting families of gender diverse children all throughout Australia. Her latest book brings together a group of friends who challenge the traditional gender binary at such a young age.

Ivy is a cisgender girl who keeps her hair short and doesn’t like to wear dresses, instead opting for shorts and a t-shirt. Alex, who identifies as not “‘just’ a boy or ‘just’ a girl,” prefers “they” as their pronouns.

Sam, a cisgender boy who loves basketball, has long hair and loves to collect flowers. Jackson is a cisgender boy who loves to wear dresses. Tom is a trans boy who loves spelling.Together the friends build a treehouse on the playground.  

A House For Everyone arrives as young people start heading back to school in the fall. According to GLAAD’s annual Accelerating Acceptance report, 20% of millenials identify as LGBTQ, compared to 12% of the total population. As gender acceptance and diversity becomes more common in younger generations, Hirst's book is a great resource for parents, teachers and librarians looking for gender inclusive material to teach their children about these topics in a more accepting world. 

A House For Everyone upends gender stereotypes and shows children that you should embrace your identity and be yourself. The book supports and celebrates gender diverse children while also illustrating the difference between gender identity and gender expression.

Hirst includes helpful definitions and notes, serving as an educational opportunity to teach both parents and children about gender diversity and acceptance. Additionally, the book offers resources and further reading to learn more about gender diversity and to break down gender stereotyping.

“I want the book to show kids the full gender spectrum, and reiterate that there's no right way to be a boy or girl - and that you don't have to be a boy or girl,” Hirst says. “Statistics suggest that over 48 percent of transgender youth identify as non-binary, which is huge."

Read more about A House For Everyone here.

In May, GLAAD and Bonnier Publishing USA announced a publishing partnership dedicated to integrating and elevating positive LGBTQ representation in children’s literature. Click here to learn more about the partnership's newest release, 'Prince and Knight'.

Jerry Camporverde is a GLAAD Communications and PR intern. He is a junior at NYU studying marketing, english and entertainment business.

the voice and vision of a new generation