Parents' Guide to

American Immigration: Our History, Our Stories

By Kyle Jackson, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 8+

Tales of inspiring people, awful racism in nuanced history.

American Immigration: Our History, Our Stories Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this book.

Community Reviews

There aren't any parent reviews yet. Be the first to review this title.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say: Not yet rated
Kids say: Not yet rated

As an introduction to U.S. immigration history, this book succeeds in both presenting an accurate overview and advancing a moral critique. Kathleen Krull's gift as a storyteller shines through in the brief profiles of fascinating figures like Serbian American inventor, electrical engineer, and mechanical engineer Nikola Tesla and German American businessman Levi Strauss, who founded the first company to manufacture blue jeans. While her skills as a historian are on display when she unpacks the logic of pro- and anti-immigration stances at various points throughout the nation's troubled past. Photographs, drawings, and political cartoons add an element of visual culture that help readers envision the propaganda used to stereotype immigrant communities.

While some young readers may be disturbed to learn about the darker elements of U.S. immigration history, telling the truth about xenophobia and racism is critically important if kids want to understand how the past informs our contemporary debates. While it's possible to quibble with which details are included and which are left out -- the U.S. role in creating or making worse many refugee crises around the world, for example -- American Immigration is an earnest attempt to open up an honest and nuanced conversation about the inspiring but disturbing history of immigration.

Book Details

Did we miss something on diversity?

Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

See how we rate