I have been very fortunate that my daughter has been interested in books since she first learned to focus her eyes. As an avid reader myself, I always knew I wanted to make reading a big part of her life. Some of my earliest & happiest memories are of my grandparents pulling me onto their laps for storytime. I want my daughter to have some of those same memories. More importantly, though, my early years of reading instilled a lifelong love of the written word. By the time I entered school, I was reading ahead of the curve and even writing my own mini stories. Clearly, as a writer, I still love reading and words.
So recently I read this article on The Conversation which got me thinking about which books benefit our children the most. As you can see, there are significant correlations between the books we read and our kids’ development. As parent’s we are the first teachers of our children & books are our best tools aside from action. I often think of how valuable it is to raise my daughter to be a good person. Character and values are incredibly important.
We love the following books for the values and character they instill. They’re also an excellent launching point for some open-ended discussions. Hearing a golden life lesson through story format, and then discussing it with you will help your child absorb the moral far better than a lecture ever will. It will also create an engaging bonding experience.
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This is a story that is sure to pull at your heartstrings. A tale of a boy who loses his teddy bear quickly turns into a genuinely moving story. This compelling story packs a strong message of compassion, sharing, and the needs of others.
This book makes for the perfect read aloud with your little one. It is a simple and sweet story that teaches the importance of helping a friend in need. The beautiful illustrations do an excellent job of showing Bear’s friends coming to his aide while he is sick. This book is part of an entire series known as The Bear Books, all of which are worth adding to your child’s library.
This Shel Silverstein classic should have a home on every bookshelf. Despite five decades in circulation the poignant message of giving and love has not aged a day. Told in a straightforward parable of a boys friendship with a tree you will feel both sadness and joy. Perhaps the best part of this book is that it leaves room for discussion and interpretation as to what lesson you should take from it.
As a creative who battles perfectionism, I absolutely adore this book. It carries so many incredible lessons, such as the importance of self and creativity. It also bears the vital lesson about how our words can affect people – both negatively and positively.
This was one of my favorite books as a child, and I still love it today. This story is about family, perseverance, and working toward a goal. It is also about helping neighbors and valuing those things that are truly most important. Truly a must read!
Nobody ever said the moral of a story needed to be hidden in the text. This is a simple little book that has a straightforward message on the importance of manners. Don’t we all want our kids to have basic manners? This quick and humorous read-aloud story teaches all the proper things to say and when to say them. Oh yeah, and you really have to mean it!
This is another one of my childhood favorites that now adorns my daughter’s shelf. I think that it’s message is more relevant than ever in this age of bullying. It bears a crucial anti-bullying message delivered with incredible storytelling. The top-notch illustrations have such incredible detail they’re sure to grab your kids attention. Check out other books by Kevin Henkes as well, as each one carries a message worth hearing.
There are a lot of books out there that teach honesty, but this is one of my favorites. David spends a lot of time making excuses and refusing to own his mistakes. He eventually learns that coming clean and apologizing makes him feel better. The tone of this tale is lighthearted and fun, and your kids are sure to love it.
This book is positively heartwarming. It teaches about kindness, love, and appreciation and how rewarding they are. The concept of “filling a person’s bucket” is not new, but is so well portrayed in this story. An updated version released for the 10th anniversary also expresses the value of filling your own bucket and avoiding toxic “bucket dippers.”
It is never too early to start teaching your children about diversity. This book is excellent for young children, and it covers all sorts of differences. The juvenile artwork and silly storytelling brings this emotional conversation to a level easy for kids to absorb. Not only does this book teach children to accept differences in others but also to celebrate their individuality.
What are some of your favorite kid’s books that promote character and morals? I would love to add them to our list.