Teaching Determination
with the best children's books

Teaching determination, perseverance, dedication, stick-to-itiveness... is so important to a child's future, but how do you do it?  It's certainly something kids need to learn through experience, but they can also learn by example. How many times has the average teacher or parent heard the phrase "It's too hard"? Our usual response is "You can do hard things" but sometimes children need convincing, they need to see how other people with challenges and obstacles persevered due to their determination to succeed. And, we happen to think children's books are perfect for teaching this very thing!

Children learn by example, and children's books are a great source of examples of these important character traits. Below are good choices for teaching determination and perseverance with children's books. We'd love to grow this list, so let us know if you know of other good ones.

Great Kids Books for Teaching Determination

Flight School
by Lita Judge
Kindergarten - 2nd grade

The Most
Magnificent Thing

by Ashley Spires
Kindergarten - 2nd grade

Wilma Unlimited
(determination in sports)
by Kathleen Krull

1st grade - 4th grade

Apples to Oregon
(perseverance as pioneers)
by Deborah Hopkinson

Kindergarten - 4th grade

Pancakes for

by Tomie dePaola
preschool - 1st grade

Thank You, Sarah!
(true story of determination
saving Thanksgiving holiday)

Kindergarten - 3rd grade

by Robert Kinerk
illustr by Steven Kellogg
Preschool - 3rd grade

Walk On!
(remind kids they've been
determined & succeeded before)

preschool - 1st grade

Pop! The Invention
Bubble Gum

by Meghan McCarthy
Preschool - 3rd grade

Sally Jean, the
Bicycle Queen
(determination needed
to learn to ride a bike!)

preschool - 3rd grade

Thank You Mr. Falker
(determination to read)
by Patricia Polacco
Kindergarten - 5th grade

Amazing Grace
(success despite opposition)
by Mary Hoffman

Kindergarten - 3rd grade

by Oliver Jeffers
preschool - 3rd grade

Little One Step
by Simon James
Preschool - 2nd grade

chapter books that teach perseverance

There are also lots of books out there that help older kids see the value of having determination and persevering.  We've had some requests for books on this subject for older kids, so we've put together the following short list. However, we specialize in books for younger kids, so we don't have reviews for these books. If you're looking for chapter books on determination and perseverance, these books might be a good place to start. To learn more about any of these books, click the Amazon button below.

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