If there is a constant in every children’s book it is that there is a lesson to be learned. For every misdeed there is a consequence, and no good deed goes unnoticed. As parents, we read books to our children to not only entertain, but educate as well. Children learn a lot from the books we select at story time, but what can we, as parents, learn from these same books? Many adults, whether they are a parent or not, can learn a lot from the books meant for our younger counterparts. Read on for some children’s books that every adult should read.
“The Little Engine that Could”
One book that would benefit many adults is “The Little Engine That Could” by Watty Piper. “The Little Engine That Could” focuses on a small steam engine that has to pull a large load over a steep hill. The little engine tries and tries to pull his load over the hill, but continues to meet failure. The moral of the story is if at first you don’t succeed, try again. Many adults are too easy to give up on themselves at the first site of failure. Rather than giving up at the first sign of adversity, keep trying until you achieve the results you desire.
“The Chronicles of Narnia”
One of the most magical and captivating book series ever to be written for children is “The Chronicles of Narnia” by C. S. Lewis. “The Chronicles of Narnia” is a seven book series that explores the history of a magical land called Narnia. The book series is nothing short of amazing. Intended for young adults, this series explores courage, love, friendship, reward and consequence and the battle of good vs. evil. As we age, often the magic in our hearts fade. “The Chronicles of Narnia” emits a magic all of its own, and is a brilliant read for both the young and young at heart.
While the “Harry Potter” book series by J.K. Rowling is classified as Young Adult literature, you’d be sorely mistaken if you believe that this book series only appeals to the young. The “Harry Potter” series has fans young and old, and for good reason. J.K. Rowling’s beloved book series captures the magic of childhood, explores courage, decency, acceptance of different cultures and the will to stand up for what you believe in, even when all goes dark in the world. Rowling laces in mythology into her deeply imaginative and well constructed world. As adults age, we tend to become less courageous and less willing to go to the ends of the earth for what we believe is right. This seven book series chronicles the treacherous fight of every day people against a group of prejudiced and immoral misfits. At the end of the day, good defeats evil against all odds.
“A Light in the Attic”
“A Light In the Attic” by Shel Silverstein is an amazing collection of poems and drawings that encompass all the worries, fears, dreams and wishes of not just children, but humanity as a whole. As adults, we tend to repress our fears, push forward regardless of our emotional state or well being. “A Light in the Attic” reminds us that we are not the only ones with fears, hopes, struggles and dreams. Sometimes an adult needs to be reminded that they are not alone as much as children do.
“When I Get Bigger”
“When I Get Bigger” by Mercer Meyer chronicles the dreams and desires of a young “critter”. His dreams include ordering a product from a magazine, going to work and dialing a telephone. This book is sure to remind adults of the excitement encountered during youth when there is so much to look forward to. While dialing a telephone to an adult may seem boring and common nature, to a child it is fascinating and exciting.
“I Was So Mad”
Another must read by Mercer Meyer is “I Was So Mad”. As adults, we tend to forgive less and hold onto hard feelings much longer than we would as a child. Regardless of the slight, all wounds mend if given the proper care. Life is too short to be angry all the time.
“Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day”
“Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day” by Judith Viorst is a story that follows Alexander during a particularly stinky day. We’ve all been there. We’ve all had days where we should have just stayed in bed. The idea is to not take it personally and wake up the next day on the right side of the bed.
“Bridge to Terebithia”
“Bridge to Terebithia” is a beloved children’s book by Katherine Paterson. This book explores the friendship of two children and the adventures that their imagination take them on. While this has a sad ending, much can be learned of the relationship between Jess and Leslie.
The lessons we learn as children sometimes have to be retaught as adults: be polite, play nice with others, treat others how you want to be treated and you reap what you sow. These books are excellent reminders of the lessons we were taught by our parents as children.
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