10 Children’s Books About Empathy

7. Ivan: The Remarkable True Story of the Shopping Mall Gorilla by Katherine Applegate

In a spare, powerful text and evocative illustrations, the Newbery medalist Katherine Applegate and the artist G. Brian Karas present the extraordinary real story of a special gorilla. From the Congo to America, and from a local business attraction to a national symbol of animal welfare, Ivan the Shopping Mall Gorilla traveled an astonishing distance in miles and in impact. Read More.
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8. Otis and the Scarecrow by Loren Long

A deeply resonant book about subtle acts of compassion and standing up for others, featuring everyone’s favorite tractor, Otis. Ene day, when a cold autumn rain sets in, Otis and the animals snuggle close, feeling warmed by one another’s friendship. But on this day, Otis can’t seem to take his eyes off the lonely figure in the cornfield. Read More.
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9. What’s Wrong with Timmy? by Maria Shriver

A little girl, Kate, enters a playground and immediately notices a boy, Timmy. Timmy isn’t like the other kids Kate knows – his face is flatter, his glasses sit crookedly on his nose, and his leg is bent inward. Kate can’t take her eyes off of Timmy. She wants to know why this boy is so different …Thus begins a discussion between Kate and her mom about kids with disabilities and Kate’s emerging comfort playing with Timmy. “What’s Wrong with Timmy?” beautifully acknowledges all the thoughts, fears, and concerns kids have when they come across physically and mentally challenged people. Read More.
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10. Amazing Grace, by Mary Hoffman

Grace loves stories – all kinds of stories – and after she hears them she usually acts them out, often giving herself the most exciting role. So when Grace’s teacher tells the class they’re going to perform the play Peter Pan, Grace knows exactly who she wants to be. But other kids disagree: “You can’t be Peter – that’s a boy’s name.” her classmate Raj says. Natalie tells Grace she can’t be Peter Pan because she’s black. At home, Grace’s mom and grandmother try to help her overcome her discouragement and rebuild Grace’s confidence just in time for auditions. Read More.
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