CLICK HERE for a Kids in Service Book List printable that you can take with you to the local library or bookstore.
Here are some books that center around the theme of Kindness.
Stories for All Ages
This book does a beautiful job demonstrating the theme of kindness for young children (ages 3 and up). The Hedgehog’s nest blows away in a storm and he bundles up to go to Badgers house. Along the way he meets friends who are very cold and one by one gives them pieces of his own warm clothing. This book looks like it is no longer in print but see if your local library has it or find a used copy. It is a sweet story of friendship and kindness!
From the Publisher: “When a fierce windstorm blows away Little Hedgehog’s nest, he puts on his winter clothes and sets off for Badger’s warm house. On his way, Hedgehog meets his friends, all shivering in the wind and snow. One by one, Hedgehog gives away his cozy mittens, hat, and scarf. But will Little Hedgehog make it through the storm to safety without his warm clothes? A delightful story about sharing with others, with soft flocking wherever Little Hedgehog’s mittens, hat and scarf appear.”
This book is a very sweet story about kindness, friendship and accepting others despite their differences. When the boy is not allowed to bring his unique pet to Pet Club, he meets up with others who were also not accepted and they join their own club where EVERYONE is accepted. This book is great for ages 3 and up.
From the Publisher: “When the local Pet Club won’t admit a boy’s tiny pet elephant, he finds a solution—one that involves all kinds of unusual animals in this sweet and adorable picture book. Today is Pet Club day. There will be cats and dogs and fish, but strictly no elephants are allowed. The Pet Club doesn’t understand that pets come in all shapes and sizes, just like friends. Now it is time for a boy and his tiny pet elephant to show them what it means to be a true friend. Imaginative and lyrical, this sweet story captures the magic of friendship and the joy of having a pet.”
The illustrations in this book are wonderful. Life is very gray and dull for Brian because nobody seems to notice him or include him. When a new child arrives in class, that all changes for Brian and slowly the illustrations change to full color as more and people start to notice him. This book is a wonderful example of how one simple act of kindness can make such a big impact on another person. I’d recommend this book to children ages 4 and up.
From the Publisher: “A simple act of kindness can transform an invisible boy into a friend…Meet Brian, the invisible boy. Nobody ever seems to notice him or think to include him in their group, game, or birthday party . . . until, that is, a new kid comes to class. When Justin, the new boy, arrives, Brian is the first to make him feel welcome. And when Brian and Justin team up to work on a class project together, Brian finds a way to shine.”
This book is one of my ABSOLUTE favorites and is a great illustration of what paying it forward means. Mary starts a revolution by secretly leaving blueberries on her neighbors front porch. This kind deed spreads like wildfire and before you know it kindness is EVERYWHERE. I recommend this book for ages 3 and up.
From the Publisher: “Can one child’s good deed change the world? It can when she’s Ordinary Mary―an ordinary girl from an ordinary school, on her way to her ordinary house―who stumbles upon ordinary blueberries. When she decides to pick them for her neighbor, Mrs. Bishop, she starts a chain reaction that multiplies around the world.”
Stories for Ages 8 and Up
My children and I DEVOURED this book!! It is a fictional story based on a real life experience that happened to the author, R.J. Palacio. This book has endearing characters and the book shifts from one character to the next so that you get the different perspectives. This BEAUTIFUL book is filled with powerful messages of kindness, acceptance and being yourself. I believe this book is for EVERYONE ages 7 and up.
From the Publisher: “August Pullman was born with a facial difference that, up until now, has prevented him from going to a mainstream school. Starting 5th grade at Beecher Prep, he wants nothing more than to be treated as an ordinary kid—but his new classmates can’t get past Auggie’s extraordinary face. WONDER, now a #1 New York Times bestseller and included on the Texas Bluebonnet Award master list, begins from Auggie’s point of view, but soon switches to include his classmates, his sister, her boyfriend, and others. These perspectives converge in a portrait of one community’s struggle with empathy, compassion, and acceptance.”
We could not wait to get our hands on this book after finishing Wonder. This book is not a sequel but takes place at the same time as Wonder. This book is told from three different points of view from three lesser known characters in the original story. These powerful stories help you to remember that there are always two sides to every story.
From the Publisher: “Auggie & Me gives readers a special look at Auggie’s world through three new points of view. These stories are an extra peek at Auggie before he started at Beecher Prep and during his first year there. Readers get to see him through the eyes of Julian, the bully; Christopher, Auggie’s oldest friend; and Charlotte, Auggie’s new friend at school. Together, these three stories are a treasure for readers who don’t want to leave Auggie behind when they finish Wonder.”
This story follows 6th grade Ally as she struggles in class to fit in and hide the fact that she can not read. Ally’s dad is deployed and their military life has led her to be enrolled in 6 schools in 6 years. It is easy to fall in love with the characters in this book and your heart struggles right along with Ally as she tries so hard to be like everyone else. If you enjoyed Wonder, you will definitely like this beautiful story about celebrating who you are and the gifts that make us all different.
From the Publisher: Ally has been smart enough to fool a lot of smart people. Every time she lands in a new school, she is able to hide her inability to read by creating clever yet disruptive distractions. She is afraid to ask for help; after all, how can you cure dumb? However, her newest teacher Mr. Daniels sees the bright, creative kid underneath the trouble maker. With his help, Ally learns not to be so hard on herself and that dyslexia is nothing to be ashamed of. As her confidence grows, Ally feels free to be herself and the world starts opening up with possibilities. She discovers that there’s a lot more to her—and to everyone—than a label, and that great minds don’t always think alike.