Inside: Courage, the ability to do something difficult despite risk or fear, can be a challenging character trait for kids to understand. The children’s books about courage shared below teach kids about the various forms of courage—physical, emotional, social, moral, spiritual, and intellectual—and why they matter.
As my 9-year-old stood on the diving board, a quiver shook his legs. I watched his chest rise as he took a deep breath, pulled his arms into dive formation, and jumped. I held my breath until he emerged. “I did it!” he smiled, water lapping around his face.
“You did! You must feel so proud!” cheered his instructor.
Later that day, we talked about how diving off the diving board for the very first time was an act of courage. Kids develop courage as they grow and take on more physical, emotional, social, moral, spiritual, and intellectual risks.
Climbing a tree, standing up against bullying, and confessing to Mom that you were the one who ate the Oreos are all acts of courage that kids can easily relate to.
20+ Heartwarming Children’s Books About Courage
The books listed below share relatable, heartwarming stories of courage that entertain, educate, and inspire.
As you read, talk about how the characters in the story demonstrate courage in the face of adversity, then invite your child to share their personal connections.
Click through to read each book description and get a peek inside!
Real Kids, Real Stories, Real ChangeThe Bravest Dog Ever: The True Story of BaltoHenry’s Freedom Box: A True Story from the Underground RailroadHoward B. Wigglebottom Learns About CourageSwimmySpaghetti in a Hot Dog BunCourageStick and StoneWonderStand Tall, Molly Lou MelonOne TreeHave Courage!JourneyThe ButterflySecret of the Peaceful WarriorA Teaspoon of Courage for KidsThe Tale of DespereauxTake a Deep BreathI Can Do It!: Kids Talk About CourageHow to Eat Fried WormsSheila Rae, the BraveBrave IreneThe Story Of Ruby BridgesBrave Charlotte and the WolvesThe Dandelion SeedThe Recess QueenEnemy PieThe Princess KnightThe Paper Bag PrincessThe Little Engine That CouldI’m Gonna Like MeOnly One YouThe Bravest of Us AllThunder RoseStuart’s CapeIf I Never Forever EndeavorRoly Poly PangolinMy Diary from Here to ThereSylvester and the Magic PebbleRosie Revere, EngineerDragons and MarshmallowsA Girl Named Helen KellerI am Rosa ParksPuddle JumpingStellaluna
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