Education K-12 M.A.

Year Approved


First Advisor

Silmser, Lisa


Children’s literature, such as picture books, chapter books, and graphic novels, has been utilized by educators in the classroom all around the world. It is well-established that children’s literature help guide students in understanding themselves and the world they live in. This literature review aims to determine whether children’s literature incorporates book characters who are third culture kids and whether third culture kid themes are adequately represented. Third culture kid (TCK) is defined as a child who has lived outside his/her passport country (home country) with his/her parents during childhood; as a result, this child has blended elements from his/her home country and the foreign culture (host country) into a third culture. To determine whether TCKs and TCK themes are sufficiently represented in children’s literature, a review of existing research about multicultural children’s books and culturally authentic texts was conducted. The literature review showed that there is hardly any children’s literature today that specifically includes TCK characters and TCK themes. These results suggest that educators must carefully select texts that accurately reflect their students’ diverse backgrounds, while also providing culturally authentic insights into other cultures. On this basis, referring to approved book lists by national organizations and seeking out book awards that celebrate international people and cultures should be taken into account when selecting children’s literature.

Degree Name

Education K-12 M.A.

Document Type

Masterʼs thesis

Included in

Education Commons