LVI Recommended Reading


stopDISCLAIMER: The links found on this page have been approved by the Life Vest Inside Education Team. However, please review all sites before sharing with your class. As we all know, the internet changes on a regular basis, and some of these sites may contain content not suitable for your classroom : )
  • Because of Winn-Dixie

    by Kate DiCamillo

    K C E

    A Newberry Honor winner, DiCamillo does a beautiful job weaving a heart-warming novel based on the importance of kindness, compassion and empathy. Showing respect for all living things, this text is one children gravitate toward from the first chapter! An amazing read aloud.
  • Charlotte’s Web

    by E.B. White

    S K C E

    This ultimate classic needs no introduction! A must read for all children,  this beautiful novel showcases the kindness of friendship, the compassion in love, the importance of empathy in life, and the gift of having self-value. The giving encapsulates the mission of Life Vest Inside.
  • Firegirl

    by Tony Abbott

    S K

    Shorter than your average picture book, this exceptional read aloud (or recommendation) screams “BUILD SELF-VALUE” and “GROW EMPATHY” for your students. When middle school students come to negotiate someone who is “different” looking, Author Tony Abbott, does a beautiful job helping kids think about what “difference” really means.
  • Number the Stars

    by Lois Lowery

    K C E

    This award-winning classic, set during World War II,  encapsulates the inspiring heroism of a nation, leaving all remembering that there was great kindness, compassion, and empathy in the world – even during a devastating time of terror and war.
  • Rules

    by Cynthia Lord

    S K

    Rules is an incredibly deserving Newberry Honor book helping teens (and even grown-ups) explore feelings of difference and finding acceptance. Delving into growing up with a sibling with special needs and embracing what those qualities encapsulate is beautifully celebrated in Lord’s award-winner.
  • Stargirl

    by Jerry Spinelli

    S K C

    If there was ever a text to build self-value and self-confidence, this is it! Spinelli inspires readers young and old with Stargirl’s whimsical living that pushes others to rethink “cool” and showcases the ignorance of judging others. This is an incredible read aloud and solo-read for students who need to build their own self-value! It’s also perfect for students who build compassion and kindness seamlessly!
  • Wonder

    by R.J. Palacio

    S K C E

    This is an exceptional text merging perspectives of one community coming to understand empathy, compassion and kindness in a relatable way. Showcasing inclusion and the importance of self-value and empathy, it highlights what much of society really wants: to be welcomed and accepted into the world.
  • Esperanza Rising

    by Pam Munoz Ryan

    S C E

    This text is perfect to recommend to students who experience unexpected “twists and turns” in life – specifically associated with tragedy and how we can grow from them. How one rises above difficult circumstances showcases growth in Esperanza’s self-value, the importance of out-stretched empathy, and the gift of kindness. A beautiful read aloud as well!
  • Holes

    by Louis Sachar

    S C

    An award winner that showcases the importance of building character in a tough environment. Students love this read aloud, but it’s an exceptional recommendation for solo-reading too. Protagonist, Stanley, has a lot to teach children grappling with good choices and leaves children thinking about self-value. The importance of showing compassion and building friendships changes lives as well!
  • The One and Only Ivan

    by Katherine Applegate

    K C E

    Sure to be a classic for years to come, the Newberry Medal Winner encapsulates the life skills of kindness, compassion and empathy. Creatively inspired by the true story of a captive gorilla named, Ivan, this chapter book will help children see the world through the eyes of love, friendship and kindness.
  • The Little Prince

    by Atoine Exupery

    S K C E

    The heart of this book is this statement: Il n'y voix bien qu'avec le coeur. L'essential est invisible pour les yeux. What does this mean? Simply put it it don't judge a book by its cover; more poetically (as the French tend to be able to do), We can only see with our hearts. The essential is invisible to the eyes. A must read for teachers!