This text set is intended for a second grade classroom. Student's need to learn about kindness at an early age. This set will help students remember the effects of kindness, how to be kind, the golden rule, and careers that involve kindness. There are a wide range of books in this set from easy picture books to difficult chapter books.
The Lion and the Mouse
Children's Picture Book
This Caldecott medal picture book was inspired by one of Aesop's fables. In the beginning of the story the lion decides to show kindness to a mouse who disrupts him. Later the mouse finds the lion trapped in a net and has to decide what to do. There are no words in this book but the pictures tell a beautiful story.
Language Arts: Writing
Standard: SL.2.2 – Recount or describe key ideas or details from a text read aloud or information presented orally or through other media.
Objective: Students will be able to re-tell the story of the lion and the mouse by looking through this picture book
Activity: Student's will look through the pictures in the book and write their own words for each page.
Pinkney, J. (2010). The lion & the mouse. New York: Little, Brown & Co.
illustrated by E. B. Lewis
"Each Kindness" has won a Coretta Scott King honor and the Jane Addams Peace Award. This sobering story teaches students and teachers about the effects of kindness. Everyone has kindness to share.
Language Arts: Reading
Big 5 Literacy: Vocabulary
RL.2.3 Describe how characters in a story respond to major events and challenges.
Objective: Students will be able to predict how students are feeling with the text of the book.
Activity: Have students look at the words used in the book show how they compare to the feelings of the characters.
Woodson, J., & Lewis, E. B. (2012). Each Kindness. Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated.
The Invisible Boy
Illustrated by Patrice Barton
Brian, A student in school feels as if he is invisible. When a new student shows up, Brian shows him kindness. The friendship between these boys builds brings Brian's strengths out and he does not feel invisible anymore. The illustrations in this book show Brian's feelings in great detail.
Language Arts: Viewing
Standard: RI.2.7 – Explain how specific images contribute to and clarify a text.
Objective: Students will be able to compare and contrast Brian at the beginning and ending of the book using the illustrations and text
Activity: Have students draw popsicle sticks to pick partners. Partners will ask questions about each other, they will then draw a picture to share with the group and talk about how awesome their partner is. This allows students to get to know each other better. I feel it would work great for a first day of school lesson.
Ludwig, T., & Barton, P. (2013). The invisible boy.
Keeping you Healthy: A Book About Doctors
Illustrated by Eric Thomas
"Keeping you Healthy" is a fun read-aloud book that talks about doctors. Children need doctors to help them when they are hurt. This book shows children that doctors are there to help them and lets them know different things doctors do.
Language Arts: Speaking and Listening
Standard: SL.2.4 –Tell a story or recount an experience with appropriate facts and relevant, descriptive details, speaking audibly in coherent sentences
Objective: Students will be able to tell a story about a time a doctor helped them or someone in their family.
Activity: Have student's play-pretend different careers and discuss how those careers show kindness.
Owen, A., & Thomas, E. (2004). Keeping you healthy: A book about doctors. Minneapolis, Minn: Picture Window Books.
The Name Jar
Cultural Children's Fiction
Unhei moves to the United States from Korea. The kids here do not know how to pronounce her name and make fun of her name. She decides to use an American name instead. Her classmates come up with names and put them in a jar and she tries out many different names, but none of them fit her. One of her classmates learns how to pronounce her name and the special meaning of it and hides the name jar so that she can use her real name.
Language Arts: Visually Representing
Standard: L.2.4 – Determine or clarify the meaning of unknown and multiple-meaning words and phrases based on grade 2 reading and content, choosing flexibly from an array of strategies.
Objective: Students will be able to describe the meaning of the words in the book.
Activity: Have students find out about the meaning of their own names.
Choi, Y. (2013). The name jar. Columbus, O.H: Zaner-Bloser.
Kids' Random Acts of Kindness
Foreword by Rosalynn Carter
Introduction by Dawna Markova
Non-Fiction Children's Book
This book is a combination of multiple children who completed random acts of kindness. This can inspire students to complete their own acts of kindness. This can also give students many ideas of what they could do to show kindness in the community.
Language Arts: Listening
Standard: SL.2.1a – Follow agreed-upon rules for discussions (e.g., gaining the floor in respectful ways, listening to others with care, speaking one at a time about the topics and texts under discussion).
Objective: Students will be able to discuss the stories from the book and relate them to their lives.
Activity: Have Students choose an act of kindness to complete. After completing the kindness share what they did to show kindness and how it made them feel.
Press, T. E. C. (1995). Kids'' Random Acts of Kindness. Newburyport: Red Wheel Weiser.
The Golden Rule
Illustrated by Gabi Swiatkowska
Children's Fiction Book
A boy sees a billboard and asked his grandfather what it says. His grandfather tells him its the golden rule, "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you." He then explains the concept to the boy throughout the beautifully illustrated book.
Language Arts: Visually Representing
Standard: W.2.2 – Write informative/explanatory texts in which they introduce a topic, use facts and definitions to develop points, and provide a concluding statement or section.
Objective: Students will be able to explain the concepts of the golden rule.
Activity: Students will make posters with the golden rule or the topic of kindness to hang in the halls, classroom, or lunchroom. This will give students a visual reminder to be kind to everyone around them.
Cooper, I., Swiatkowska, G., Dixon, W., & Zimmerman, B. (2008). The golden rule. Place of publication not identified: Spoken Arts.
Molly Pitcher: Young Patriot
illustrated by Gene Garret
Children's non-fiction chapter book
Molly Pitcher was an inspirational character in the Revolutionary War. Follow her life from a child through adulthood throughout this book. Molly Pitcher gained her name through showing kindness and supplying soldiers with water. She put others above herself.
Language Arts: Writting
Standard: W.2.1 – Write opinion pieces in which they introduce the topic or book they are writing about, state an opinion, supply reasons that support the opinion, use linking words (e.g., because, and, also) to connect opinion and reasons, and provide a concluding statement or section.
Objective: Students will be able to write their opinion over the "Molly Pitcher Book"
carryingActivity: Students can play a game carring water through an obstacle course.
Stevenson, A. (1997). Molly Pitcher, young patriot. New York, NY: Aladdin Papberbacks.
A Sick Day for Amos McGee
Philip C. Stead
Illustrated by Erin E. Stead
Children's Fiction Picture
Amos McGee works at the zoo. Each day he takes time to help his friends there. One day he is sick and unable to go to work. His friends at the Zoo decide to go to his house and help him while he needs it.
Language Arts: Viewing
Standard: L.2.3 – Use knowledge of language and its conventions when writing, speaking, reading, or listening.
Objective: Students will be able to show understanding of the story when reading or listening to it.
Activity: Come up with ways to help others when they are sick.
You've got a Friend in Me
"You've got a Friend in me" is a song from Disney's Toy Story movie. My favorite lyrics are, "If you've got troubles, I've got 'em too, We stick together and can see it through, Cause you got a friend in me. This shows many concepts of kindness.
20 Things We Should Say More Often
Kid President shows ways to be kind in the world. My favorite one he says is, "It is okay to disagree, but it is not okay to be mean." This is important for students to realize in the classroom.