I think we can all agree that the world could always use a little more kindness. In 1998, World Kindness Day was established as part of the World Kindness Movement. This is an international holiday dedicated to spreading kindness. We all know there are TONS of children’s books on the subject, but I thought I would take a moment today to share a few of my favorites. Please note: This article contains affiliate links. I receive a small commission from purchases made using these links. This commission allows me to maintain this website and continue posting reviews.
A Hat for Mrs. Goldman: A Story about Knitting and Love by Michelle Edwards, Illustrated by G. Brian Karas
Those of you who know me well know that when I’m not hoarding books, I’m hoarding yarn. This sweet picture book brings those two loves together for me. (Though technically, I crochet, because I’m not a skilled knitter at all.) In this book, we follow Sophia and her neighbor, Mrs. Goldman, who teaches her about mitzvahs when she is knitting hats for others. Sophia takes the lesson to heart and decides to make a hat for Mrs. Goldman. The illustrations are as warm as the story. Altogether, a cute read reminding us how rewarding it is to be generous.
Thank You Omu by Oge Mora
Thank You Omu was a fast favorite for me. The illustrations drew me in and the story got me, hook, line, and sinker. In this book we meet Omu, an older lady who is cooking a big pot of red stew. Her stew smells so good that everyone in the neighborhood comes by to ask her for a bowl. Omu is kind and gives them all stew until she has none left for her own dinner. Of course, that’s not where our story ends, but I don’t want to give it away. This one is a great story about gratitude and the rewards we reap when we are kind and generous.
I Walk with Vanessa: A Story About a Simple Act of Kindness by Kerascoët
I Walk With Vanessa is a wordless picture book. My favorite thing about this book is that children are able to narrate the story themselves. This format is perfect for those little readers just learning to read, because it encourages reading without the pressure of all those tricky words. In this book, the illustrations show Vanessa, a young girl who is moving to a new neighborhood. We see a boy who isn’t nice to Vanessa. Another girl notices this interaction and decides to do something about it. This is a sweet book about standing up for others and the power of kindness in communities.
Kindness Makes Us Strong by Sophie Beer
Kindness Makes Us Strong is the perfect board book for introducing little ones to the concept of kindness. Sophie Beer is one of my favorite illustrators because her work is always absolutely adorable AND incredibly inclusive. In this book, there are children with lots of different skin tones and abilities, all providing examples of what it means to be kind. A favorite in our family, I recommend this one to anyone looking for board books.
Those Shoes by Maribeth Boelts Illustrated by Noah Z. Jones
This picture book handles many themes, including teasing, embarrassment, poverty, and (of course) kindness. This may seem like a lot for one picture book, but Boelts manages to blend these themes seamlessly. In this story, we meet Jeremy, a boy who wants the shoes everyone else is wearing, but his family cannot afford them. He is so determined that he finds a pair at a thrift store and buys them even though they don’t fit. This gives Jeremy the opportunity to do something nice for someone less fortunate than him.
I hope you all enjoyed my top five picks for World Kindess Day this year. Have you read any of them? What are some of your favorite books about kindness to read to your little ones? Leave a comment and let me know!
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