The girl who wanted to be a boy
This illustrated children's story explains what it feels like to be a child who isn't happy in their own body. It is aimed at young children, using animals rather than humans, to share what it means to be transgender without using the term itself. The story could also be used in discussion with young children about what it feels to be different.
Paperback ISBN 9781909320680
21.6 x 0.3 x 21.6 cm
Full colour illustrations throughout
Published Dec 2017
Aimed at 4-6 year olds
Reception to Year 1 in the UK
Preschool to Kindergarten in the US
Felicity is not happy. She feels much more like a boy than a girl. But what will happen when she tells people she wants to be Fred?
Part of the Rainbow Street Series, I Am Fred is a story based on real-life discussions between a mother and her son who, inside, increasingly felt more like a girl. The book came out of stories the author told her younger 5-year-old son to try to explain his teenage brother’s gradual transition into a girl.
How do you talk about sexual identity to a young child who does not yet know about sex? Is it right and appropriate to discuss sexual topics with young children? That’s the point, this book is not about sex it is about self-esteem, self-awareness and self-identity: gender identity. With this understanding comes diversity and acceptance. This book easily finds a home at Your Stories Matter, alongside other diversities including dyslexia, dyspraxia, ADHD and autism.
The Rainbow Street books are all aimed at 4- to 6-year-old children, using colourful pictures of animals to tell stories of gender identity. They all share the common theme of acceptance and could equally be used at home and in school to discuss all forms of difference and diversity.
By sharing the Rainbow Street Series of books with young children, the aim is to make gender diversity no big deal and no different to accepting and respecting ethnic diversity, religious diversity and forms of neurodiversity. Stories in the series cover topics ranging from gender identity and adoption by same-sex parents, through to single fatherhood and it being ok to live alone in old age.
Rolfe has taught across England from Foundation Stage up to Year 7 (Sixth Grade in US). As a SENCo, she has worked with challenging children with behaviour and learning difficulties. She has worked in a variety of primary schools, including a Sikh faith school and a Pupil reintegration unit. The author has two daughters, one who is transgender. Rolfe’s very brave and beautiful teenage transgender daughter has been living as her true self for over a year now. As a mother, Rolfe found it a struggle to explain the concept of transgender to her 5-year-old daughter so created Rainbow Street. Rainbow Street is a series of picture books with LGBTQ characters aimed at Foundation Stage and Year 1 (Kindergarten in US). Rolfe drew upon her 21 years primary teaching experience to write and illustrate the books.
Currently under development
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