Thursday, April 22, 2021

"Black and Blue," Children's Novel on Racism

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Nationwide -- Sussman Education, Inc./Lightswitch Learning announce the launch of its just-released culturally-responsive grades 6-12 graphic novel, Black and Blue by author Jared Sams. When the George Floyd trial verdict was delivered and social injustices are being highlighted in the media, Black and Blue is a timely and riveting graphic novel written to help start, continue, and deepen conversations with children about difficult topics such as racism.

Black and Blue is about two black brothers in New York City impacted differently by family stories about their grandfather, a former New York City policeman. When one brother decides to become a police officer, a disconnect forms between him and his brother. That tension reaches a breaking point when increasing conflicts between the police and the Black community boils over during the “Black Lives Matter” protests. View the Lightswitch Learning - Black and Blue novel trailer and learn why you should read Black and Blue.
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“A year later and the death of George Floyd is still shocking, but he was only one in a stream of black bodies struck down by over-judicious law enforcement. These heartbreaking events are tough to reconcile, especially for developing children and teens. Now, more than ever, we need tools to help our youth process these indelible tragedies and inspire them to tap into their own emotional problem-solving skills. Black and Blue does just that, using the graphic arts to empower through education; presenting a bold call to action in confronting an issue with no easy answers,” said Jared.

Black and Blue shows young people how to better understand and communicate their differences. It inspires them not to give up hope. It helps them realize that they have the power and can learn the skills to bring about changes for themselves and others in their community and the world.

According to Cheryl Wills, popular children’s author and TV News Anchor for Spectrum News NY 1, “Black and Blue may be unlike any graphic novel you’ve ever read. I can report to you that this book is going to touch a nerve and make you think deeply about sensitive issues like racism.”

Jared, who is both the author and the illustrator of the book, is a young African American writer and illustrator based in Los Angeles, California. Jared is a self-taught artist who channels his hip-hop and punk music influences to help children develop unique skills, passions, and creative expressions. Jared advocates for the voiceless through his art and strives to infuse his work with empathy.

Black and Blue is a 64-page full color, graphic novel that includes Depth of Knowledge student questions aligned to standards and activities to support classroom learning related to social justice and diversity issues.

Twitter: @SussmanEdu
Twitter: @LightswitchK12

For more information visit Sussman Education, Inc./Lightswitch Learning at and

Sussman Education, Inc/Lightswitch Learning is a leading national digital and print provider of culturally responsive grades K-12 culturally responsive student, teacher, and parent resources. Lightswitch Learning is a division of Sussman Education Inc., a leader in K-12 digital and print sales distribution that has served New York City schools for 50 years. Their mission is to help parents and students be the best they can be and to provide the culturally responsive resources parents and teachers need to help their children succeed socially, emotionally, physically, and academically.
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Posted by community events coordinator, Nzinga Lonstein Austin, is a prolific blogger who writes on the entertainment industry and issues for people with developmental and physical challenges.

She is presently in high school looking to have a career in video, film, and media. You can see more of her entertainment writing on Lonstein Movies.

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