Kindness is a facet of everyday life that is often overlooked. It tends to be taken for granted, rarely emphasized and easily forgotten. Kindness, or lack thereof, begins to cultivate itself at a very young age, so it is imperative to nurture a child with the understanding that kindness always has a place in this world.
Below are some book suggestions that focus on kindness. By the end of each story, your heart will feel a little fuller, and you’ll feel like paying it forward.
“Last Stop on Market Street” by Matt de la Peña
This book focuses on a grandson by the name of CJ and his grandmother as they take their public transportation ride to their last stop on Market Street. CJ asks a lot of “how” and “why” questions as he looks around and sees a world full of things that seem unfair, boring or dirty. His grandmother is quick to help CJ appreciate the beauty in dirty street corners and to be thankful for what they have.
“The Thank You Book” by Mo Willems
Willems’ books are always silly, but they also have a certain amount of heart that you won’t find in many places. In his final book in the Elephant and Piggie series, Piggie is determined to thank everyone she knows. How sweet of an idea is that?
“The Invisible Boy” by Trudy Ludwig
Brian is invisible. He goes to school, but nobody sits by him at lunch, nobody picks him for kickball and nobody invites him to birthday parties. Brian just sticks to drawing, the thing he loves most. But when Brian performs a small act of kindness to make the new kid in class feel welcome, his classmates begin to see and appreciate him for who he is.
The Association for Library Service to Children has created a wonderful book list that accompanies this theme very well. It is called the Unity/Kindness/Peace Booklist, with its goal being to “share the message of creating unity, acting with kindness toward others and promoting peace.” We compiled the list into a topic guide on our website, which allows you to easily find each of these items in our catalog.