Children’s Books About Self-Esteem

A roundup of children's books about self-esteem encourages children to embrace their mistakes as well as their strengths.
Novel effect roundup of self esteem books

by Melissa Hammersley

Kids who know their strengths, understand their uniqueness, and embrace both, have the confidence to try new things. Self-esteem helps kids deal with mistakes and try again, even if they fail at first. They are more likely to try their best, and feel proud of what they can do. In school, at home, and with friends, children who read these children’s books about self-esteem do better.

As a parent, one of my goals is to give my children a safe space to be themselves. Whether it’s encouraging them to follow their own interests, supporting their desire to try things they aren’t good at yet, or teaching them to celebrate the ways they are unique, they will always know I love them unconditionally and exactly as they are.


Children's Books About Self-Esteem

It’s never too early, or too late, to help kids develop and improve how they see and value themselves. Here are our favorite books to offer opportunities to discuss the importance and power of confidence.

The confident narrator of this book is proud of everything that makes him who he is. In this ode to Black boys, laughter and basketball sounds are accompanied by skateboards and bass guitar.

This gorgeous, lyrical ode to loving who you are, respecting others, and being kind to one another comes from actor and activist Grace Byers and talented newcomer artist Keturah A. Bobo.

Vashti sits in front of a blank piece of paper. The teacher encouraged Vashti to try, but she cannot draw – she is no artist! In frustration, she jabs the blank page. She ends up on a surprising journey of self-discovery because of that one little dot. A simple, witty story and free-spirited illustrations gently encourage our creative spirits.

Zuri’s hair has a mind of its own. Zuri knows every curve, coil, and kink is beautiful. While Zoe’s mom is the hair superhero, daddy must fill in when she isn’t home. This is an ode to natural hair that celebrates daddies and daughters.

You get to hear the music as you read aloud as all the animals demonstrate their groovy moves at the Jungle Dance. Warthogs waltz and lions tango, but Gerald the giraffe cannot dance. The others laughed at him until he discovers that the secret trick is to dance with what’s within.

In this powerful anthem, little girls everywhere are reminded of their immeasurable worth due to their creation in the image of God. The tender-hearted rhymes and glowing illustrations are accompanied by simple, sweet melodies. Give the little girl heroes in your life a snuggle-worthy storytime.

As she chugs over the hill, the Little Blue Engine recites her famous motto. She inspires hurrahs and hurrays and brings toys to faraway children. When your little ones begin to putter out and lose steam, pull out this book to encourage their confidence.

Download the Novel Effect app for FREE to bring these  stories to life with music and sounds that respond to your voice.

Download the Novel Effect app to bring stories to life with music and sound that respond to your voice. 

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