The number one thing you can do as a parent to help teach your child to read is to read to them. The number one thing as a parent you can do for the world is to raise your child to be a responsible, caring adult. These 75 books that build character can help.
Let’s face it parenting is a challenge on good days but including lessons about character traits during reading time is a shortcut that works. Books are a wonderful tool to reinforce tough to grasp lessons and to open the door for discussions that we aren’t always sure how to approach with our students and kids. All these books build character by teaching lessons about character traits and messages without being preachy. Click the book titles for full reviews of these 75 books that build character or click on the find it here affiliate link to find it on Amazon.
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75 Books That Build Character
In this story, Sheila is a little mouse known for being brave. However, when Shelia gets lost and scared it’s her very own scaredy cat sister Louise who shows the bravery. I think a lot of younger siblings can relate to this story, I know I can because we usually fall into line allowing our older siblings to lead while we follow. It’s nice to see the little sister saving the day for once.
This is a book that does not give readers a narrow definition of what a family is. Families don’t have to look a certain way, have pets or live in a house all by themselves, or be the same as your neighbors. As a teacher, I really appreciated the matter of fact way it embraced diversity. Kids see that families are not all like theirs and it’s important to validate the truth while recognizing that while they may not all look alike, all families are made with love. Great book and the best part is that children love it.
This is an amazing book, it tells the true story of the 1955 State Champion Little League team from South Carolina. The story is heartbreaking and heartwarming all at once as the authors tell the readers about the realities and injustice that this team of little Black boys faced. They were the first Black all-star team who were disqualified from playing in the little league world series because they hadn’t played a single game to become state champs. How do you become state champs without ever playing you might ask because all the other teams forfeited. I dare you not to cry, I was a sobbing mess by the end. The book itself is too complex for most students under 5. All kids old enough though should take a look, and be prepared to answer some tough questions about why people were so mean and how things are different and not so different today.
It’s easy to fall into the trap that this book won’t grab children, that it’s old fashioned and I am here to say don’t fall for that, this book does have an old fashioned feel to it but children love it. They love this old Yiddish folktale about a little boy, his very special blanket and his grandfather who made it for him. Over the years the blanket transforms into a jacket, a vest, a tie, and handkerchief and finally a button. The story is beautiful and kids love not only the repetitive text when the grandfather is sewing but also the continuing storyline of the mice that live under the floorboards who use the scraps of material for all sorts of things. There are no goofy gimmicks, no lights or sounds just a great story and beautiful illustrations in this gem! A fantastic book about change, resourcefulness, and the importance of family which is why I have added it to this list of 75 books that build character.
Nate is a little boy who decides he wants to take ballet after watching a dance production.Nate is pretty confident that boys can take ballet even though his older brother gives him a hard time about it. I love that Nate wants to dance but he hates the idea that he might have to wear pink, clearly pink is not a good thing to him, he just wants to dance. I think this is the author’s attempt at showing that the stereotype of a very feminine boy doesn’t always fit male dancers. I think the value in this book is Nate’s confidence in doing what he loves to do because he loves it. That grit is a character trait worth discussing with young children because as they get older it seems to get harder to be yourself with the confidence of a small child.
Author’s who can tackle big complex issues in the pages of a children’s book awe me and This author does it beautifully. The issue in this book is 1st generation identity and immigration. The little girl in this book is sulking around her parent’s store on the 4th of July, sad she is missing all the fun. Her family is busy making Chinese food for customers she is sure won’t come, in her mind who would want Chinese food on such an American holiday? I’ve added this book to my list of 75 books that build character because this book offers children who are 1st generation Americans to relate to the struggles in the boo and children who are not to look through that lens and build empathy and understanding.
A Chair For My Mother is a classic mom book that should be read generation after generation. A sweet story that includes 3 generations of women who are all working hard to save money to replace furniture lost in a fire. The comfy chair they are planning to buy really represents the comfort and safety they are trying to rebuild in their new home after such tragedy. I love the sense of collective good in this family it is a sharp contrast to the competition and individualistic goals we usually see.
This is a beautiful story about a little girl during the depression who is shipped from the country to the city to earn money by working for her uncle in his bakery. She is obviously nervous but understands that both her parents are out of work and she must do what she can. She brings seed packets from her country home with her to the city, where she plants and tends to them. This is more a story about making the most of the hard times and makes me think of the quote “Bloom where you are planted.”
12.I Remember Miss Perry by Pat Brisson –>
16.The Little Red Hen Makes A Pizza by Philomen Sturges –>Find it here
21.Alexander And The Terrible Horrible No Good Very Bad Day by Judith Viorst –>Find it here
56.Edwardo the Horriblest Boy in the Whole Wide World by John Burningham –>Find it here
58.Music Over Manhattan by Mark Karlins –>
Which books do you think should have made the list?
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