Pay it Forward Booklist

From the Publisher: “Fifth-grader Javon has the big responsibility of being a Book Buddy to a kindergartner named Richard. But when he meets Richard for the first time, he isn’t so sure he’s up for the challenge. Richard won’t talk to Javon or even look at him. He seems sad, but Javon quickly realizes that Richard reminds him a whole lot of himself at that age, and Javon is determined to help his new friend.Both boys learn a lot that year, but what Javon learns from Richard is the most important lesson of all: that helping someone find their happiness can make your own heart happy, too.”

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.”

Ordinary Mary is back and she is ready to change the world again!  Mary’s bravery and kind words on the school bus lead to ripple effect of kind words and kind deeds throughout the school day. This book would be great for children ages 3 and up.

From the publisher: “Follow Mary in this feel-good story as she once again inspires others with positivity and kindness through a variety of ordinary deeds! Including examples that happened at schools as a result of using the first book, this book focuses on the ability kindness has to change an entire school. Can one child’s good deed change the world? It can when she’s Ordinary Mary―an ordinary girl on her way to her an ordinary bus stop and an ordinary school―when with one act of kindness she makes a friend. Through her school day, Mary’s courage and kindness spreads, reaching farther than could ever be imagined.”

One Good Deed by Terri Fields is the story of a boy who changed his neighborhood with one kind deed.  Jake’s kind deed of sharing berries with his neighbor led to a chain of kindness that spread throughout the day and the neighborhood.  This is a great illustration of how one kind deed can cause a ripple effect of kindness and joy.  This book would be great for ages 3 and up.

As you know we are HUGE Peter Reynolds fans in this house and this new book is another winner.  Be You is a beautiful book that encourages all of us to BE OURSELVES.  It reminds us of the unique qualities that make us who we are.  It is a celebration of being different, kind, persistent, a good listener and not afraid to ask for help when we need it.  This book is perfect for children ages 3 and up.

Miles of Smiles by Karen Kaufman Orloff is a sweet story of how a simple smile can spread from person.  It is fun to watch the smile of a baby spread around the land and thus spread joy and kindness.  This book is perfect for children ages 3 and up.

Pass it On by Sophy Henn is a simple and sweet story of sharing joy and passing it on to others.  This book shows that you can pass on love, smiles, joy and laughter to everyone you meet.  I would recommend this book for ages 3 and up.

Miss Rumphius by Barbara Cooney is a favorite in our house.  This is the story of how one woman changed her neighborhood by planting seeds.  I would recommend this story to ages 5 and up.

From the publisher: “Alice made a promise to make the world a more beautiful place, then a seed of an idea is planted and blossoms into a beautiful plan.  This beloved classic and celebration of nature—written by a beloved Caldecott winner—is lovelier than ever! Barbara Cooney’s story of Alice Rumphius, who longed to travel the world, live in a house by the sea, and do something to make the world more beautiful, has a timeless quality that resonates with each new generation. The countless lupines that bloom along the coast of Maine are the legacy of the real Miss Rumphius, the Lupine Lady, who scattered lupine seeds everywhere she went. Miss Rumphius received the American Book Award in the year of publication.”

Because Brian Hugged His Mother is out of print but I was lucky to find it read on YouTube.  This book is a sweet and simple story about the ripple effect that can happen when one person does a kind thing.  I’d recommend this book for ages 3 and up.

I read this book a few years ago and found it so inspiring.  This is the middle grade version of the original story and so it is appropriate for grades 3-7.  In this story a boy named Trevor takes on an extra credit project to change the world.  He does 3 kind deeds and asks that the people who received his kindness to pay it forward by doing 3 more kind deeds for others.  He believes that this ripple effect will change the world.

From the Publisher: “Pay It Forward is a moving, uplifting novel about Trevor McKinney, a twelve-year-old boy in a small California town who accepts his teacher’s challenge to earn extra credit by coming up with a plan to change the world. Trevor’s idea is simple: do a good deed for three people, and instead of asking them to return the favor, ask them to “pay it forward” to three others who need help. He envisions a vast movement of kindness and goodwill spreading across the world, and in this “quiet, steady masterpiece with an incandescent ending” (Kirkus Reviews), Trevor’s actions change his community forever.
This middle grade edition of Pay It Forward is extensively revised, making it an appropriate and invaluable complement to lesson plans and an ideal pick for book clubs, classroom use, and summer reading. Includes an author’s note and curriculum guide.”

Books for the Adults

From the publisher: “As the obituary writer in a spectacularly beautiful but often dangerous spit of land in Alaska, Heather Lende knows something about last words and lives well lived. Now she’s distilled what she’s learned about how to live a more exhilarating and meaningful life into three words: find the good. It’s that simple–and that hard.”

From the Publisher: “Kindness Boomerang contains 365 daily acts, one for each day of the year, accompanied by inspirational quotes, personal stories on the power of paying it forward, and tangible steps to change your outlook on life. This book empowers you to bring positivity into your everyday life and the lives of those around you. Wahba invites you to practice kindness in relationships, kindness with yourself, kindness with nature and kindness in many more forms. This book is a call to action for anyone who wants to live a more connected and fulfilling life.”

From the publisher: “The best way to make yourself feel great? Do a random act of kindness for someone! These 101 stories will make you smile and get you excited about what you can do, too. Make miracles happen for yourself and others. It’s easy. Just think outside the box and look around. There are so many ways that you can help—and it turns out the biggest beneficiary may be you! Scientific studies have shown that “doing good” is not only good for the recipient of the good deed, but also for the person doing it, making that person happier and healthier.”

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