12 Books about Honesty and Reflection for Elementary Students

Children who show self-awareness consider the effect of emotions on themselves and others.

This honest awareness helps them deal with their emotions in positive ways. It also helps children recognize the feelings of others and that people may view them differently than they see themselves. 

Another self-awareness characteristic is learning about our strengths, and being honest about our limitations, and personal preferences. This allows us to develop these strengths, learn from our mistakes, and seek support.

These self-awareness books show characters who recognize their own feelings and behavior and how they affect others. They illustrate how these feelings influence their choices and any consequences.

We start with a selection for younger readers:

The Girl Who Never Made Mistakes by Mark Pett

This delightful children’s book, The Girl Who Never Made Mistakes by Mark Pett and Gary Rubinstein, is sure to bring smiles to readers of all ages. It tells the story of a young girl named Beatrice Bottomwell who has never made a mistake in her life – until one day when she does!

Beatrice quickly learns that making mistakes is an essential part of growing up, and it leads her on an unexpected journey.

Through an exciting narrative and vivid illustrations, this heartwarming tale explores themes such as self-confidence, courage, friendship, and resilience. With its relatable characters and inspirational message about overcoming fears and flaws, The Girl Who Never Made Mistakes is sure to become a favorite for families everywhere. 

In addition to providing valuable lessons about life, it will also leave readers with plenty of laughter along the way.

Ish by Peter Reynolds

Are you ready to explore the power of creativity? The book “Ish” by Peter Reynolds is an eye-opening story about the creative journey of Ramon. 

Ramon loves to draw, but one day he gets discouraged when his drawing doesn’t look perfect. Through heartfelt conversations and guidance from family and friends, Ramon learns that being creative means following your heart and showing up authentically without getting caught up in ‘perfection’

This inspiring story will remind you that it’s okay to make mistakes and that everyone is capable of creating something beautiful. “Ish” encourages readers (young or old) to discover their own passions, express themselves through art, and enjoy the process along the way!

Exclamation Mark by Amy Krouse

Book ‘Exclamation Mark’ by Amy Krouse Rosenthal is a fun and exciting story about an exclamation mark that doesn’t feel like he fits in with the rest of the punctuation marks. Written by acclaimed children’s author, Amy Krouse Rosenthal, this book will bring joy to readers of all ages! 

With whimsical illustrations and a heartwarming message, “Exclamation Mark” is sure to be loved by everyone who picks it up.

This delightful story follows the journey of an exclamation mark seeking acceptance among his fellow punctuation marks. Along his adventure, he meets some interesting characters who show him that being different can be celebrated – even for a tiny exclamation mark! 

Readers will enjoy seeing how our little hero learns to embrace his unique qualities as well as find out what happens when he finally gets accepted into the punctuation family.

The Name Jar by Yangsook Choi

This popular children’s book, ‘The Name Jar’ by Yangsook Choi, is a must-read for young readers! Readers will be inspired to embrace their differences as they follow the story of Unhei, a new student from Korea who struggles with her name. 

Unhei moves to America and is expected to choose an American name that fits in. But instead of conforming to her peer’s expectations, she decides to celebrate her uniqueness and share it with those around her. 

In this heart-warming story, readers will learn valuable lessons about self-acceptance and embracing diversity. Through endearing characters such as Unhei’s teacher and classmates, we are reminded of the importance of being open-minded and respecting everyone’s background.

The Sky of Afghanistan by Ana A. de Eulate

Ana Eulate’s new book, ‘The Sky of Afghanistan’, is an inspiring and poignant tale of one young girl’s powerful dreams for peace. The story follows a brave eleven-year-old Afghan girl who uses her imagination to help guide her through difficult times in a war-torn land. 

This heartwarming story will make readers feel the strength of hope and courage as the protagonist finds solace in her daydreams and beautiful stories. Through these visions, she is able to keep going despite all odds, never giving up on her dreams for herself and her country. 

As the story unfolds, we are reminded that even in the darkest times there can be light at the end of the tunnel – if we just keep believing in our own power.

Stephanie’s Ponytail by Robert Munsch

The classic children’s book ‘Stephanie’s Ponytail‘ by Robert Munsch and Michael Martchenko is a fan favorite among kids and parents alike. The beloved story follows Stephanie, a young girl who dreams of standing out from her classmates with a unique hairstyle. 

But when Stephanie decides to wear her hair in two ponytails, she soon finds out that all the girls in her class have copied her look! 

Stephanie struggles with the idea that she no longer stands out while trying to maintain pride in her own creativity. But as more and more copycats join the fray, Stephanie discovers an unexpected solution that will make everyone happy – including herself! 

With colorful illustrations from acclaimed artist Michael Martchenko, this delightful story is sure to capture the hearts of readers of all ages

The Three Questions by Jon J.Muth

“The Three Questions,” written by Jon J. Muth, is an amazing book that speaks to readers of all ages. The story follows Leo, a young boy who is determined to find the correct answers to the three questions which will help him live his life in the best way possible: when is the best time to do things? Who is the most important one? and What is the right thing to do? 

Leo’s journey for answers takes him on a unique voyage with characters such as a wise turtle, and a panda bear. With each encounter, Leo learns valuable lessons about courage, friendship, and understanding. Ultimately Leo finds out that seeking knowledge from within oneself can provide the best answers for living life fully and authentically. 

“The Three Questions” by Jon J. Muth is a beautiful tale of finding inner wisdom and living one’s life to the fullest. It is an inspiring story for children and adults alike.

Older Readers

Airborn by Kenneth Oppel

The exciting world of the sky awaits readers in ‘Airborn’ by Kenneth Oppel! In this thrilling novel, readers join 15-year-old Matt Cruse as he embarks on a journey to save a dying balloonist and unravel a mysterious secret. 

Along the way, Matt discovers strange creatures living far above the clouds and finds himself face to face with the balloonist’s granddaughter – beautiful yet guarded Kate de Vries. 

Alongside an eclectic cast of characters including airship pirates and brave cabin crews, Matt navigates through treacherous storms, uncovering secrets that have been hidden for centuries. With unexpected twists around every corner, “Airborn” promises an unforgettable adventure that will keep readers on the edge of their seats!

From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by E.L. Konigsburg

If you’re looking for an exciting adventure, look no further than E.L. Konigsburg’s classic children’s book, ‘From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler‘. This captivating story follows two siblings as they set out on a mission to solve a mystery at a museum in New York City. 

Armed with only their wits and courage, they bravely venture into the unknown and discover something truly unexpected!

The remarkable journey begins when brother and sister Claudia and Jamie Kincaid decide to run away from home to explore the city. They end up at the Metropolitan Museum of Art where they stumble upon a strange statue. With their detective skills put to the test, Claudia and Jamie must work together to unravel this tantalizing mystery.

Absolutely Almost by Lisa Graff

The book by Lisa Graff, ‘Absolutely Almost‘, is sure to delight readers who love stories about finding self-confidence in the face of adversity. The book follows Albie, a ten-year-old boy who struggles with school and making friends. When his parents hire a babysitter to help him with his homework, Albie must confront not only his academic difficulties but also his lack of self-confidence.

Through the support and guidance of his new babysitter, Albie begins to believe in himself and find the courage he never knew he had. Over time, he discovers that he can do more than just get by – with enough hard work and determination, anything is possible! 

With its real-life issues portrayed through a heartfelt storyline featuring an unlikely hero, Absolutely Almost will surely capture readers’ hearts while teaching them valuable life lessons.

Counting by 7s by Holly Goldberg Sloan

This captivating novel follows the journey of Willow Chance, an exceptionally gifted twelve-year-old girl who embarks on a quest to find her place in the world after suffering an unexpected tragedy. 

Willow is an outsider with an impressive IQ who loves counting by sevens and learning random facts. She must learn to navigate through life’s challenges as she makes unlikely friendships and discovers how love can transform even the most difficult situations. 

As readers follow Willow’s journey, they will be inspired to see beyond what appears on the surface and appreciate that everyone has something special to offer. Be prepared to experience tears of sorrow and joy while reading this emotionally charged novel!

Rain Reign by Ann M. Martin

The Rain Reign novel follows the story of Rose Howard, an intelligent and talented fifth grader living with Asperger’s Syndrome, as she learns to cope with her family life and find understanding in the world around her. 

Rain Reign is filled with touching moments that will both tug at your heartstrings and make you smile. The story offers readers an inside look into what it’s like for Rose to navigate through life while being on the autism spectrum, but it never falls short on an adventure either! 

From fostering new relationships to facing obstacles head-on, this book has plenty of exciting moments that will keep you turning pages until the very end.

Happy reading!

From Ms. Emma Kerr

BFIS Early Childhood and Elementary Librarian, BFIS Library