As a parent, you do your best to model good behavior for your children, and impart good values on them. But sometimes, as hard as we try, our little ones can fall victim to the influence of the media, other children they encounter, and even other family members who don't always set the best example. If you are worried that your child is a little too selfish for their own good, there are books that will make your kid more compassionate and teach them to be more considerate of others.
Unfortunately, we live in a world where greed can be good, and doing bad things to others can turn you into an instant celebrity. As parents, you can do your part to raise the next generation to be more compassionate and thoughtful of others, and it's never too early to start.
Add a few books on this list to story time with your little ones, and be sure to talk with them about why compassion is so important. I can't promise that your kids will stop fighting with their siblings over the bathroom or the last chicken nugget after reading, but they may at least feel guilty about it afterwards.
1. 'Faith The Cow' by Susan Bame Hoover
Faith the Cow is the true story of a cow who is sent to help feed families in need, showing your kids that selflessness is a true gift.
2. 'How Full Is Your Bucket?' by Tom Rath and Mary Reckmeyer
In How Full Is Your Bucket?, the main character learns about how people's buckets are metaphorically filled by acts of kindness. This book is great for showing little ones how their actions impact others.
3. 'My Friend Is Sad by Mo Willems
Gerald the elephant is sad, and his friend Piggie is determined to whatever it takes to cheer her friend up in My Friend Is Sad from Mo Willems beloved series — perfect for kids ages four to eight.
4. Charlotte's Web
A little girl and a spider befriend a pig who is otherwise treated as an outcast in Charlotte's Web, a classic story of friendship.
5. 'Stellaluna' by Janell Cannon
Stellaluna tells a story of acceptance. A bat who is separated from her mom after an owl attacks grows up with a bird family who forces her to learn how to behave like one of them. In the end, they learn that even animals that are different can be friends.
6. 'Those Shoes' by Maribeth Boelts
A little boy wants a pair of shoes that all of the other kids are wearing in Those Shoes. But in the end, he learns that there are things like a loving family that are worth more than money can buy.
7. 'The Hundred Dresses' by Eleanor Estes
The Hundred Dresses is an award-winning book about a young girl who is bullied by her classmates for wearing the same dress every day. It's the perfect tool for teaching children not to judge people by their appearance.
8. 'Hands Are Not For Hitting' by Martine Agassi
If you're a mom, you've probably said those words a million times. Martine Agassi's book, Hands Are Not For Hitting gives kids suggestions on better uses for their hands like playing music and counting.
9. 'The Giving Tree' by Shel Silverstein
The Giving Tree is a touching classic children's story about a tree who loves a little boy, and gives him everything from her fruit to her branches until she has nothing left.