Character Education Titles for Elementary Students

Picture books can also be used for middle school students!



  • DW's Guide to Perfect Manners by Marc Brown
  • Sounder by W.H. Armstrong
  • Velveteen Rabbit by M. Bianco
  • Hooway for Wodney Wat by Helen Lester
  • Respect by Lucia Raatma
  • The Mouse Bride by Joy Cowley (self-respect)
  • Stand Tall Molly Lou Melon by Patty Lovell and David Catrow (self-respect)
  • The Other Side by Jacqueline Woodson and E.B. Lewis
  • Weslandia by Paul Fleischman and Kevin Hawkes
  • So Far from the Sea by Eve Bunting and Chris K. Soentpiet


  • Big Book for Peace, edited by Ann Durell and Marilyn Sachs
  • The Peace Book, by Todd Parr
  • Can You Say Peace? by Karen Katz



  • The Boy Who Cried Wolf by Aesop
  • Chrysanthemum by Kevin Henkes
  • A Day's Work by Eve Bunting
  • Down the Road by Alice Schertle
  • Edwurd Fudwupper Fibbed Big by Berkely Breathed
  • The Librarian of Basra: A True Story from Iraq by Jeanette Winter
  • Pepper the Lamplighter by Elisa Bartone


  • Berenstein Bears and the Truth by S. Berenstein
  • A Day's Work by Eve Bunting
  • Honesty by Lucia Raatma
  • Would I Ever Lie to You? by Caralyn Buehner
  • The Wolf Who Cried Boy by Bob Hartman
  • The Horned Toad Prince by Jackie Mims Hopkins
  • The Honest-to-Goodness Truth by Patricia C. McKissack
  • A Bad Case of Stripes by David Shannon


  • Sam by Ann Herbert Scott


  • Cookies by A.K. Rosenthal
  • Kids Talk About Fairness by Carrie Finn
  • Fairness by Sandra Ziegler
  • Being Fair: a book about fairness by Maty Small
  • Fairness Counts by Marie Bender
  • The Market Lady and the Mango Tree by Pete and Mary Watson


  • The Saturday Escape by Daniel J. Mahoney
  • The Seven Chinese Sisters by Kathy Tucker
  • Stone Soup by Jon J. Muth
  • Once Upon a Cool Motorcycle Dude by Kevin O'Malley


  • Don't Need Friends by Carolyn Crimi
  • Crow Boy by Taro Yashima
  • A Chance to Shine by Steve Seskin and Alan Shambalin
  • Horton Hears a Who by Dr. Seuss

Selected Bibliography
Braman, Amy. “Character Education Literature List.” 21 Oct. 2009 <>.
Findlay, Diane. Characters With Character: Using Children's Literature in Character Education. Fort Atkinson, WI: Upstart Books, 2001.
Hall, Susan. Using Picture Storybooks to Teach Character Education. Westport, CT: Greenwood Publishing Group, Inc., 2000.
James, Helen Foster. “Picture Books to Support Character Education Lessons.” San Diego County Office of Education. 21 Oct. 2009 <>.
McElmeel, Sharron L. Character Education: A Book Guide for Teachers, Librarians, and Parents. Westport, CT: Libraries Unlimited, 2004.
Stephens, Claire Gatrell. Picture This! Using Picture Story Books for Character Education in the Classroom. Westport, CT: Libraries Unlimited, 2004.