Birdie and Me
Jack and Birdie are sent to live with their uncles after their mother dies. The siblings embark on a journey of self-discovery, exploring their gender identity and eventually learning self-acceptance. The story guides readers to develop empathy for Jack and Birdie as they struggle with grief and also allows them to understand that celebrating gender expression is a form of respect in a society that values diversity. In a Grade 5–8 classroom, the novel lends itself as a read-aloud and may facilitate an exploration of mental health, gender, grief, and the harmful effects of bullying. Students may also be encouraged to reflect on and discuss media portrayals of gender identity.