Public libraries across the nation are embracing a new initiative to teach children about “gender identity and inclusion,” and are hosting “Drag Queen Story Hour,” in which a drag queen performer comes in to read story books to children.

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An NBC report last month shared the story of “Angel Electra,” a drag queen performer who went to a Manhattan branch of the New York Public Library to read to children.

Elektra has been reading to kids with Drag Queen Story Hour for about a year. “The main key that we try to teach the children is acceptance,” she explained. “My job is to express to them, to help them understand, that it is OK to be different. It’s OK if you’re a boy, and you want to wear a tutu. It’s OK if you’re a girl and you want to wear a cap and fitted jeans, you know.”

The report states that, “Three years after Drag Queen Story Hour’s San Francisco debut, drag performers are reading to kids in bookstores and libraries from New York to Alaska.”

A CBN News report states: According to its website, “DQSH captures the imagination and play of the gender fluidity of childhood and gives kids glamorous, positive, and unabashedly queer role models.  In spaces like this, kids are able to see  people who defy rigid gender restrictions and imagine a world where people can present as they wish, where dress up is real.”
 
The program is aimed at very young children such as toddlers (2-3 years), preschool (3-5 years), and early elementary grades K-2 (5-8 years).

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In the following video report from a Houston, TX station, the reporter notes that the kids took a little while to “warm up” to the new concept the first time a drag queen visited their library, and the newscaster concludes with the remark, “Start them young, right?”

FORBES also recently reported on the new initiative, writing: Exactly what it sounds like, Drag Queen Story Hour features drag queens in all their dressed-up, glamorous glory reading progressive, age-appropriate literature to kids of all ages.

In so many ways, drag queens are the perfect people to read out loud to little ones. Not only do they capture the imagination, playfulness and gender fluidity of childhood but they offer strong LGBTQ role models and the empowering message that it’s okay to be yourself.

Some of the books likely to be read include Julian is a Mermaid by Jessica Love, Why Does Mommy Have Tattoos? by Marilyn Rondon, It’s Okay to Be Different or The Family Book by Todd Parr, Neither by Airlie Anderson and Not Quite Narwhal by Jessie Sima.

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Harmonica reads at the @nypl #dragqueenstoryhour #dqsh

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Lil Miss Hot Mess sharing beauty tips after storyhour 👑 💜

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Queens in queens! Bella Noche reading to the children this morning! 👑 💜

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@lilmisshotmess reads Sparkle Boy by Leslea Newman at @bklynlibrary

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