State of Our Schools: Brooklyn educator publishes children’s book highlighting diversity

A Brooklyn educator is highlighting Black and brown representation in his new children’s book titled “Brand New Shoes.”
Abe Akanmu says he noticed a lack of diversity in children’s literature for Black and brown children. 
Akanmu is a sixth-grade history teacher and says the publishing of his book was aimed to combat this challenge--with an important lesson. 
"It teaches kids the importance of working hard and it also teaches them accountability. They follow the storyline, and they'll know how important it is to work hard and how important it is to not make excuses to just take ownership of what is happening in your life without blaming others,” said Akanmu. 
He tells News 12 the book is not only for children. “There's also a parental tip in there about how to motivate your kids and if you see them working hard and they don't reach a goal, how to tell them that you're proud of them. a lot of kids don't hear that enough,” said Akanmu. 
“They can see a person that looks like them on the cover and in the images and they can also read a book with a storyline that kind of relates to their background and their interests,” said Akanmu. 
He says his time as a children’s author is not over and that he has written work waiting to be published.