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Be kind. Encourage compassion. Inspire creativity. Nurture courage. Grow your mind.

7 Children’s Books that Teach Compassion

June 1, 2023

In a world that often feels fast-paced and disconnected, it is essential that we teach kids the importance of compassion and kindness. Let’s open the doors to compassion through the pages of these extraordinary children’s books that teach compassion:

  1. Be Kind by Pat Zietlow Miller

This children’s book explores the power of kindness in our daily lives by following a young girl named Tanisha. After a series of unkind incidents make her feel sad, a classmate reflects on how to make a positive difference. 

  1. We’re All Wonders by R.J. Palacio 

This book brings readers along to explore the life of Auggie Pullman. Auggie was born with a facial irregularity and, as the book continues, Auggie invites readers into his world and shares his experiences of being treated differently. Conveying the simple message that everyone deserves kindness and understanding, Auggie’s story is the perfect book to convey themes of empathy and compassion with your kids.

  1. The Rabbit Listened by Cori Doerrfeld

This picture book focuses on the themes of empathy and grief, following the story of Taylor, a young child who experiences a difficult event. Taylor encounters different animals who each offer a solution to alleviate the pain Taylor has been feeling. However, none of them offer the comfort Taylor really needs…until the rabbit comes along. The rabbit simply listens to Taylor’s story. Demonstrating the importance of being a calming and empathetic listener, Taylor is able to express her emotions without judgment.

  1. Have You Filled a Bucket Today? by Carol McCloud 

Showing kindness to others benefits everyone, not just those we help! This children’s book introduces the concept of “bucket filling” as a metaphor for kindness, compassion, and positive behavior. When people are kind, considerate, and supportive, they fill others’ buckets, as well as their own. On the other hand, negative actions such as bullying, teasing, or being unkind can empty someone’s bucket. This story simply and effectively encourages readers to choose words and behaviors that uplift and motivate others. 

  1. I Am Human by Susan Verde

This book explores the themes of mindfulness, empathy, and the shared humanity that connects us all! The book takes readers on a journey of self-discovery, reminding them that they are not defined solely by their flaws. “I Am Human” encourages children to embrace their individuality and to treat themselves and others with kindness and compassion. It highlights the importance of empathy and understanding, acknowledging that everyone makes mistakes and that forgiveness is a valuable part of personal growth.

  1. Guion The Lion by Rebecca Macsovits 

This lighthearted picture book shares the story of a young lion named Guion who sees things a little differently from his friends. Empathy, curiosity, and adventure are the guiding themes of this picture book. As the plot develops, readers learn how appreciating and embracing others’ differences can bring great fun!

  1. You, Me, and Empathy by Jayneen Sanders

This children’s book aims to teach young readers about empathy, kindness, and understanding in a relatable and accessible way. Following a diverse group of children as they navigate various everyday scenarios, the story highlights the importance of empathy in their interactions. Through simple and engaging language, it encourages readers to recognize and value the feelings and experiences of others.

Join Curious B.E.I.N.G.s as we explore heartwarming stories that inspire children to embrace compassion as a guiding principle in their lives!


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