Patricia Morris and Catherine Morris
Annotations by Patricia Morris
Peace and Justice: Books for children and youth
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This list is in progress. We have started with a short list of book for young children on peace, justice, kindness, courage optimism and other virtues. We will continue to add titles as we evaluate them. See titles for parents, teachers and post-secondary education students on schools and conflict transformation.
The art work at left was done by kindergarten students of Patricia Morris in Vancouver, Canada. Click on the image to see a larger size.
Amnesty International. We are all Born Free: The Universal Declaration of Human Rights in pictures. London: Amnesty International UK, 2016. See illustrated powerpoint slide presentation.(ages 5+)
Brown, Monica, and John Parra (illustrator). Waiting for the BiblioBurro. Berkeley, CA: Tricycle Press, 2011 (ages 5-8).
Cabrera, Jane. If You're Happy and You Know It. New York, USA: Scholastic, Inc., 2005 A joyful version of the song to sing with lions, hippos, and other animals. (Aages 3-6.)
Coles, Robert, and George Ford (illustrator). The Story of Ruby Bridges. USA: Scholastic, 2010 (ages 4-8).
Côté, Geneviève. Without You. Toronto, Canada: Kids Can Press, 2011. Two friends realize that while playing alone is okay, it's more fun with a friend (ages 2-5).
Eco, Umberto, and Eugenio Carmi, trans. William Weaver. The Three Astronauts. New York, USA: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1989. A beautifully illustrated story of 3 astronauts from different parts of the world who learn that just because we may look and sound different, we all have similar feelings. (ages 5 and up).
Elliot, David, and Randy Cecil. And Here's To You. New York, USA: Scholastic Inc., 2004. A toast to those with two, four or even six legs, celebrating the things that make us wonderful from buzzing bees to milk-giving cows to joyful people. (Ages 5-7).
Fitch, Sheree. If You Could Wear My Sneakers: A Book About Children's Rights. Toronto: Doubleday Canada, 1998. (ages 5 to adult)
Fox, Mem. Whoever You Are. Boston, MA: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 1998. Children from all over the world may look and sound different but they all want the same things (ages 0-10).
Hennessey, B. G., and H. Nakata, H. Because of You: A Book of Kindness. Summerville, USA: Candlewick Press, 2005. A simple and effective explanation of kindness — if we are all kind, it can lead to world peace. (ages 3 and up)
Katz, Karen. Can You Say Peace? New York, USA: Scholastic, 2006. Beautiful illustrations of children from all over the world saying "peace" in different languages. At the end of the book, there's a larger list of how to say the word "peace" in several other languages. (ages 4-8)
Keller, Laurie. Do Unto Otters: A Book About Manners. New York, USA: Square Fish, 2009. A book about the golden rule but explained by otters and rabbits. (ages 4-8)
LeBox, Annette. Peace Is An Offering. New York, USA: Dial Books for Young Readers, 2015. This explains peace in a very simple way for children to understand: "May peace walk beside you wherever you are." (ages 3 and up)
Leaf, Munro, and Robert Lawson (illustrator). The Story of Ferdinand. New York: Viking Press, 1936. A very old story, written in 1936, about a bull who likes to smell flowers instead of fight. (ages 3-7)
Litwin, Eric and Dean, James. Pete the Cat: I Love My White Shoes. New York, USA: HarperCollins, 2010. Pete the Cat is the most optimistic character in literature. No matter what happens, you keep moving along and singing your song because, as Pete says, "it's all good!" (Ages 3 and up.)
McKinley, Cindy, and Mary Gregg Byrne. One Smile. Bellevue, USA: Illumination Arts, 2002. With a lovely smile, a little girl starts a series of kind acts that explain how being kind is so simple yet so important. (ages 4-8)
Meiners, Cheri J., and Elizabeth Allen. Be Positive! A Book About Optimism. Minneapolis, USA: Free Spirit Publishing Inc., 2013. Happy instructions on how to be positive in language that children understand. (Ages 3-6.)
Moore Thomas, Shelley, and Eric Futran. Somewhere Today: A Book of Peace. Morton Grove, USA: Albert Whitman and Co., 1998. "Somewhere today, someone is reading a book about peace. Maybe it's you," is one of the lines in this book that explains the concept of peace in language that's easy for young children to understand. (ages 4-8)
Ohi, Ruth. Fox and Squirrel. Toronto, Canada: Northwinds Press, 2013. Two friends, Fox and Squirrel, discuss, describe and celebrate their similarities and differences. (Ages 3-6.)
Otoshi, Kathryn. One. San Rafael, USA: KO Kids Books, 2008. A lovely story with a lovely message about upstanding rather than bystanding. We all need to be like One. (ages 3-9)
Parr, Todd. The Peace Book. New York, USA: Little, Brown and Company, 2004. A beautifully illustrated book with simple concepts to explain peace. (ages 5 -8)
Pinkney, Jerry. The Lion and the Mouse Boston: Little, Brown, 2009. A beautifully illustrated book telling the classic tale. (ages 2-8)
Radunsky, V. What Does Peace Feel Like? New York, USA: Simon & Schuster, 2004. The author asked children how peace smells, tastes, sounds, looks and feels and compiled their answers with lovely illustrations. At the back of the book, there is a large list of how Peace is said in 150 languages. (ages 5-10)
Raffi, and Eugenie Fernandes. One Light, One Sun. New York, USA: Random House, 1988. An illustrated copy of Raffi's lovely song.
Raschka, Chris. Yo! Yes? New York, USA: Scholastic Inc., 1993. A very simple—one or two words on each page - yet very effective story of two boys making friends despite their differences. (ages 3-6)
Rosenthal, Amy Krause, and Jen Corace. This Plus That: Life's Little Equations. New York, USA: HarperCollins Children's Books, 2011. Simple, fun equations about life. Eg. "handshake + 'how do you do' = polite" or "good days + bad days = real life". (Ages 5 and up.)
Ruzzier, Sergio. Bear and Bee. New York, USA: Disney Hyperion, 2012. Bear, who has never seen a bee, describes them as fearsome and monster-like to his new friend, who he doesn't know is a bee. (Ages 3-6.)
Ryder, Joanne, and Norman Gorbaty Earthdance. New York, USA: Henry Holt Kids, 1996. Stunning illustrations with a beautiful poem about the earth dancing in the universe. (ages 3-8)
Serres, Alain, and Aurélia Fronty. I Have the Right to be a Child. Toronto, Canada: Groundwood Books, 2012 An explanation of the rights of children along with some beautiful illustrations. (ages 4-7)
Shannon, David. Duck on a Bike. New York, USA: Blue Sky Press, 2002. Fantastic illustrations of a duck and his farmyard friends happily learning to ride a bike. It's hard at the beginning and you wobble a lot but if you keep trying, it's really fun! (Ages 4-7.)
Smith, David J. If the World Were a Village. 2nd edition. Toronto, Canada: Kids Can Press, 2011. (ages 5-12)
Waber, Bernard. Courage. Boston, USA: HMH Books for Young Readers, 2002. The concept of being brave is simply explained for young children: going to bed without a nightlight or tasting the vegetable without making a face or being the new kid on the block and saying hi. (Ages 4-8.)
Willems, Mo. Can I Play, Too? New York: Disney-Hyperion, 2010. A simply told story of inclusion and friendship. Mo Willems has written a number of Elephant and Piggie books (various titles), published by New York, USA: Disney Hyperion, various dates. Piggie and her great friend, Gerald the elephant, celebrate their friendship in this wonderful series of books. Many of the books teach difficult concepts in a gentle, amusing way that children understand: empathy, compassion, inclusion, friendship, acceptance of differences, seeing something from a different perspective, optimism, kindness. Here is small sampling of some of the titles: My Friend Is Sad, My New Friend Is So Fun, The Thank You Book, Waiting Is Not Easy, Can I Play, Too?, I Really Like Slop, Elephants Cannot Dance, A Big Guy Took My Ball, I Love My New Toy, I Am Invited To A Party!, Happy Pig Day!. (Ages 3 and up.)
Williams, Karen Lynn, and Khadra Mohammed. Four Feet, Two Sandals. Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 2007. *(ages 5-10)
Williams, Sam, and Mique Moriuchi. Talk Peace. London, UK: Hodder Children's Books, 2005. Talk high, talk low, talk peace: A happy book with a happy message. (ages 3-6)
Winter, Jeanette. Wangari's Trees of Peace: A True Story of Africa. New York, USA: Harcourt Books, 2008. The true story of Wangari Maathal whose environmental movement caused over 30 million trees to be planted in Kenya. (ages 3-7)
Conflict Transformation and Peacebuilding: A Selected Bibliography (formerly Conflict Resolution and Peacebuilding: A Selected Bibliography). Copyright 1997-2008 Catherine Morris. All rights reserved.