8 Books About Kindness

Kindness is Cooler

Practicing random acts of kindness, sparks of good, or paying it forward: call it what you will; there are many ways to show kindness to others. I once embarked on a month of kindness in which I completed thirty-five sparks of good for others—one of those acts was to simply pay for the coffee of someone behind me. My kids were with me that day and they were thrilled at what was happening! Surprised baristas and smiles all around. It was so fun and simple we did it again, and again! We then looked for other ways to be kind and share kindness with others, from small actions to big deeds. These eight books explore kindness in many ways, to get your child excited about caring for and sharing with others.

Ordinary Mary’s Extraordinary Deed, by Emily Pearson and Fumi Kosaka
Ordinary Mary lives a most ordinary life as an ordinary girl. One day she stumbles upon some ordinary blueberries and what happens next is a chain reaction of good deeds. Mary sets off acts of kindness around the world and when her work comes full circle, your child will celebrate how one ordinary deed can become an extraordinary series of events. (4-8 years)

The Kindness Quilt, by Nancy Elizabeth Wallace
The children in this book are inspired by Aesop’s fable The Lion and the Mouse after their teacher, Mrs. Bloom, reads the story in class. She then instructs each student to perform an act of kindness and present it to the class. Minna cannot choose just one and decides to make a quilt with all of them. Other classmates add theirs to the quilt, and it soon takes over the school. The eclectic illustrations present a variety of ways in which the important lesson of kindness can be shared, and displayed. (4-5 years)

Heartprints, by P.K. Hallinan
According to Hallinan’s book, when you help others, you are not only kind, but you also leave heartprints along the way, which is an excellent way to not only teach kindness, but for kids to understand what kindness feels like. This books explores how being kind and sharing with others can change another’s mood, as well as your own. This heartwarming story is perfect for younger kids and will certainly leave a heartprint on you. (3-5 years)

I See Kindness Everywhere, by Shelley Frost
This vibrantly illustrated book gives younger kids a visual peek into the world of kindness and gratitude for everyday things. Thank you cow, for our milk! A little appreciation can go a long way, and your young child will be encouraged to look around them with new eyes. (ages 2 and up)

What Does It Mean to Be Kind?, by Rana DiOrio
The title of this book is a good question that many kids have. What does kindness mean, really? The concept of treating others the way they want to be treated as a golden rule is explored, and kindness is defined in many different ways to help children understand its value and apply it to their everyday actions. (4-8 years)

The Golden Rule, by Ilene Cooper
A moral principle found in many cultures around the world, the golden rule is deftly explained in this rich book. A grandfather teaches his grandson the simple rule about treating others as you wish to be treated yourself. With an included explanation of how the rule is woven into major religions, this book is a moral and literal exploration of the value of kindness for kids of all ages, and it shines just as brightly as the rule it is named after. (4-8 years)

Kindness is Cooler, Mrs. Ruler, by Margery Cuyler
Mrs. Ruler is an unconventional teacher who decides to teach her unruly students that kindness is cool. Each kindergartner must perform five acts of kindness, and while most of the kids catch on, there is one student who needs a rescue of the class gerbils to get in a last-minute of kindness. Parents and teachers will appreciate the list of 100 acts of kindness at the back of the book to inspire kids with ways to put kindness into action. (5-10 years)

Non-Random Acts of Kindness, by Lauren Myracle
Ty is a busy second grader with a brain full of thoughts and a list full of crazy things he needs to do. Anxious about an event where he has to perform an act of kindness in front of his class, Ty’s worry turns to wonder as he realizes that being kind, random or not, is just part of being Ty. A great read for older kids who want to connect with kindness at the elementary school level. (6-9 years)

How do you teach your children about kindness?

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