Reading together about characters who persist through difficult challenges inspires a child to do the same. Here are a few of our favorite books about persistence and problem-solving.
This classic book has shown generations of young children the power of positive thinking and perseverance. When a train engine breaks down while carrying goodies for all the children, it asks for assistance from other passing engines, but they all refuse. Finally, a little engine agrees to provide help getting the toys up and over the mountain. “I think I can, I think I can.” ▸ Get it at the Library
Far, far away there is an island of imaginary friends. They wait there until they are “imagined by a real child.” Beekle is there, waiting, but his turn never seems to come. He takes matters into his own hands and leaves the imaginary island and goes to the real world on his own. Will he finally find an “unimaginary” friendship? ▸ Get it at the Library
Itsy-Bitsy Spider by Rosemary Wells (Infant, Toddler)
A sing-along book with a classic nursery rhyme tune and beautiful illustrations shows a little spider who never gives up.▸ Get it at the Library
Still Stuck by Shinsuke Yoshitake (Toddler, Preschool)
In this book, a young child wants to do things for himself! While getting undressed one day, the child gets stuck with his shirt over his head. Uh, oh. What if he’s stuck forever? ▸ Get it at the Library
The Most Magnificent Thing by Ashley Spires (Toddler, Preschool)
A story about a little girl (and her dog) who plans to make “the most MAGNIFICENT thing!” However, making this magnificent thing turns out to be harder than she expected and she tries and fails to make it, repeatedly. With the encouragement and support of her friend, the dog, she takes a break and tries one more time. ▸ Get it at the Library
Flight School by Lita Judge (Preschool)
Little Penguin wants to fly so badly that he enrolls in a flight school for birds. The teacher isn’t convinced, but they let Little Penguin participate. Little Penguin practices for weeks and weeks but still can’t make it up into the skies. Dejected, he sets off for home, but then one of his classmates has an idea. ▸ Get it at the Library
These books were recommended by Samantha Blanquart, an Early Literacy Outreach Librarian with Ready to Read Resource Center. Visit their website for more info about early literacy or to check out one of their reading kits for young children.