As a child I was incredibly shy and about as far from confident as a girl can be. When we found that we were expecting our first daughter, I wanted her to be bold, strong and confident. Everything I wasn’t as a kid. If you read my post: 3 Ways I Parent a Child Different from Myself, then you know that my daughter is my opposite. From her interests to her natural confidence, she is definitely nothing like my childhood self!
One way I have helped my daughter (now daughters) become bold and confident is by sharing books with strong female leads or books that share good lessons of character traits I want my children to have.
5 picture books for raising confident girls:
Ladybug Girl by: David Soman and Jacky Davis- Ladybug Girl is the story of a little girl named Lulu. One day, her Mother and Father have work to do around the house. Her older brother teases that she is much too little to play with him and Lulu must create her own fun. Lulu becomes Ladybug Girl! A superhero ladybug that can do anything! She is not too little to help smaller creatures: ants and her trusty sidekick dog Bingo.
What I like about it: Ladybug girl uses her imagination to prove that she is capable of doing big things even though she is small. The story shows Lulu using reading and science skills as well as being helpful to smaller creatures. It teaches kindness and reinforces the thought that you are never too little to do big things.
What my daughter likes about it: “Lulu is fearless and has a good imagination”.
Chrysanthemum by Kevin Henkes- This story is about a little mouse with a big name. Chrysanthemum loves her long beautiful name until the first day of school. Her classmates tease her saying her name is too long. They say, since she is named after a flower they are going to “sniff her” and “pick her”. Chrysanthemum is devastated. The story concludes when the mice get a music teacher with a long special name. She teaches the children how special the name “Chrysanthemum” truly is.
What I like about it: I feel like bullying and teasing is something all children will, sadly, have to endure at some point. I like that the book presents a situation that kids can relate to. It teaches kids that it is important to like yourself the way you are and the value of standing up to bullies.
What my daughter likes about it: “Chrysanthemum’s parents and teachers help her realize that she has a special name”
Princesses Wear Pants By: Savannah Guthrie and Allison Oppenheim- Is the story of Princess Penelope that proves that Princesses (or girls) can wear pants and still be a Princess (or be feminine). She has interests galore that don’t all involve wearing gowns and sipping tea. From science to growing a vegetable garden to help those in need, Princess P shows that girls can wear and be anything. She radiates bravery and compassion, and she does it in pants!
What I Like about it: Though my daughter is the exception to this rule, “not all girls enjoy wearing dresses.” I love that this book teaches girls that they can be and do anything as well as being perfect the way that they are. Even though my daughter does enjoy wearing dresses, a lot of her interests such as zoology and entomology are frequently perceived as male interests. It’s great to show her that girls can do and like anything!
What my daughter likes about it: “That she is brave and has a lot of different interests!”
Bloom by Doreen Cronin and David Small- Is about a powerful yet messy fairy living in a spotless glass kingdom. The people begin to complain of her mess and heavy footing and are pleased when she makes the decision to move to the forest. After many years the glass kingdom falls into disrepair and the king and queen set out to find the magical creature in hopes that she can use her magic to fix their kingdom. When they fail to see the beautiful magic hidden within the disheveled little fairy, they send a girl who works in the castle in which they have labeled “Ordinary” to find her as they think that the fairy must have been frightened by their excellence. The girl sets out and Bloom teaches her that she is anything but ordinary and with hard work has exactly what it takes to repair the kingdom.
What I like about it: I love the message that with hard work one can accomplish anything! I also love that the authors show that there is no such thing as an ordinary girl.
What my daughter likes about it: “That Bloom shows the girl that she can do big things even though she is little”
Dear Girl by Amy Krouse Rosenthal and Paris Rosenthal- This beautiful book is a collection of lessons and morals for girls. Each page is a new message that girls need to know. From liking themselves the way they are to not being disappointed when they aren’t invited to something, this book brilliantly illustrates a compilation of powerful messages that every girl needs to know about themselves.
What I like about it: I truly believe every girl needs this book! It teaches girls that they are valuable, smart and brave. The book emphasizes the importance of trusting your instincts, being inquisitive. While also showing girls that it is okay to be vulnerable. It shares thoughts on being a good friend and being kind to everyone. As well as teaching girls that being unique is a good thing. Even my husband agrees that it is a wonderful assortment of messages for our girls. His favorite line in the book: “You know what’s really boring? When people say how bored they are?”
What my daughter likes about it: “I love the lessons it teaches me, like bravery and being me.”
There are so many books many books that teach amazing lessons. Examples of uniqueness, confidence and bravery are qualities I find important for young girls. If you want to enforce these lessons with the young girls in your life, these 5 books won’t disappoint.