Milo is excited about her class trip to the museum. The docent leads them on a tour and afterward Milo has time to look around on her own. But something doesn’t feel right, and Milo gradually realizes that the people from her community are missing from the museum. When her aunt urges her to find a solution, Milo takes matters into her own hands and opens her own museum!
8.5″ x 8.5″ | 36 pages
Milo’s Museum by Zetta Elliott is a beautifully illustrated, empowering story of a young girl (Milo) who is excited to go on a school field trip to a museum. Her grandfather explains, “Museums hold all the things that people feel are valuable or important.” Imagine how Milo feels when she finds the museum offers little to no representation of African American history. Her follow up conversations with family members help give language to her frustration (and that of the readers’.) They also inspire her to take matters into her own hands, becoming the curator and docent of her own museum. We won’t tell you the ending — but suffice it to say that this story opens the door to age-appropriate conversations with young children about representation, institutional racism, youth activism, museum studies, lessons from family, and community engagement. It is also one of the all too few books that describes youth activism supported and informed by elders–instead of in opposition to or isolation of adults.
The book is beautifully illustrated by Purple Wong, which really brings the story to life. This is a great story that is not only an interesting perspective on a museum visit but shows Milo using her imagination and her own memories to create a very personal exhibition. There is also a great interactive part at the end where readers can make a list of things they might put into their own museum, where they can personalize their own memories. A really enjoyable story.