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Spanish Books to Talk About Refugees, Migration, and Parent-Child Separation

When I was in fourth grade, a Kuwaiti girl named Yasmine joined our class mid-year. It was the second Gulf War. I remember how far the war seemed, and yet how close it felt with a refugee student in my class. Ms. Elias told the class to welcome Yasmine simply by playing with her, and speaking to her in a gentle voice. 

We want to share some remarkable books to use as conversation starters in your classes. These books will help your students understand more about the refugee experience. 

Books on Refugees

Palmir is the beautiful and touching journey of a little dragon who flees a home that has become dangerous, and finds refuge in a new place with new friends. It's perfect as a read aloud for K-2 audiences. One powerful image that stayed with me long after reading the book is how few belongings Palmir takes with him. “What can I fit into my suitcase?” is a struggle that many of our young students can learn to empathize with.

Somos Exploradores is the story of a young girl and her older brother. The two of them alone escape war. Each step of the way, her brother encourages her to keep moving by using his imagination and weaving a tale of being explorers. The black and white illustrations with the main protagonists containing color, along with the conclusion of the story are powerful examples of how illustrations can support the meaning of hope in the author’s words. I highly recommend it for grades 2-4. 

El camino de Marwan is the story of Marwan, a refugee. Marwan escapes a war-torn country. With simple words and a powerful message, the author tells a story of perseverance and eventually integration. El camino de Marwan could be read in grades 2-5. 

Below are some more books that may help with these discussions both with the whole class, and children of refugees as individuals. 

Books on Migration 

Los carpinchos

Book on Parent-Child Separation 

Los grandes pasos de Papá


Los deseos de Carmela

Milo imagina el mundo

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