Supporting Diversity and Inclusion with Story
Authentic Folktales and Discussion Guides
by Lyn Ford and Sherry Norfolk, Editors
February 2020, 126pp, 7x10
1 volume, Libraries Unlimited

Paperback: 978-1-4408-6707-1
$50, £39, 44€, A69
eBook Available: 978-1-4408-6708-8
Please contact your preferred eBook vendor for pricing.

This treasury of authentic world folktales helps develop cultural understanding.

Today's increasingly interconnected and globalized world demands that students be taught to appreciate human diversity and recognize universally held values and beliefs. Authentic, culturally based folktales can lay the foundation for this cultural understanding.

Professional storytellers like editors Sherry Norfolk and Lyn Ford are deeply committed to bringing people together through story. In this book, they have identified a group of culturally diverse storytellers whose carefully researched tales authentically reflect the cultures from which they come. The book includes well-crafted, culturally authentic folktales contributed by storytellers of varying cultures and ethnicities. Commentaries from the contributors follow each tale, reflecting on the story and its significance to the culture it represents. Sets of questions for teachers and librarians also accompany each story to facilitate discussion.

Teachers, librarians, and information specialists find that stories engage students’ attention and empathy. The commentaries provide insights into the significance of cultural norms, customs, and beliefs represented in the story, and the discussion questions and guides help them drill down with students to achieve deeper understanding. Resource lists of additional relevant materials at the end of each section promote continued learning.


  • Demonstrates how folktales are engaging, non-didactic, and entertaining–they captivate students' attention while allowing them to explore other cultures and value systems
  • Provides commentaries that offer insights into the significance of the cultural norms and beliefs represented in each story
  • Includes thoughtful and effective discussion questions and guides that save librarians and teachers time
  • Offers resource lists of relevant materials for further study
Lyn Ford is an internationally recognized storyteller, a teaching artist for the Ohio Alliance for Arts Education and the Kennedy Center's Ohio State-Based Collaborative Initiative, and a mentor for Thurber House writing workshops and summer writing camps for young authors. The author of three award-winning story collections, Ford is also coeditor for or contributor to several storytelling-in-education publications. Ford is the recipient of two National Storytelling Network Oracle Awards and is a member of the Circle of Elders of the National Association of Black Storytellers and the Writing Council of the National Writing Project.

Sherry Norfolk, an award-winning storyteller, author, and teaching artist, performs and presents nationally and internationally. She is a dynamic storyteller who tells well-crafted and age-appropriate folktales from around the world. She is coeditor with Lyn Ford of Storytelling Strategies for Reaching and Teaching Children with Special Needs, and with Jane Stenson of The Storytelling Classroom, a series that explores rigorous standards-based storytelling strategies for learning across the curriculum. A Kennedy Center and Wolf Trap teaching artist and adjunct professor at Lesley University, she is a recognized leader in arts integration.


Special Storytelling Resources—2021 Storytelling World Resource Awards, January 29, 2021


"Both school and public children’s librarians will find this a valuable resource … It presents a nuanced perspective on the importance of story in fostering cultural competency and advice on effective storytelling … Highly recommended."—American Libraries, January 4, 2021
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