Be Kind
This post contains affiliate links. If you use these links to buy something we may earn a small commission to cover costs. Thanks.


Be Kind is a sweet and careful picture book about kindness that gets the information across without meaning heavy-handed.
“These days, it seems more significant than ever for books to teach young spirits how to act with understanding, civility, and charity.
When Tanisha drops grape juice all over her new clothes, her classmate needs to obtain her feel strong. What does it mean to be kind?
From examining the new girl to play to standing up for someone being bullied, this inspiring story investigates what charity is and how any act, big or tiny, can make a variation or help a friend.

Be Kind by Pat Zietlow Miller

Be Kind by Pat Zietlow Miller

Be Kind

All over her new dress. Everyone laughed. I almost did, too. But Mom always tells me to be kind, so I tried.

I don’t think it worked. I said, “Purple is my favorite color.” I thought Tanisha would smile. But she ran into the hall instead. When she came back, snack time was over. She put on her art smock and didn’t look at anyone.

I almost told Tanisha that art was my favorite class, but I didn’t want her to leave again. So I painted purple splotches and added some green until I had a bunch of beautiful violets.

While I painted, I thought about Tanisha. Should I have handed her my napkin? Let her borrow my sweatshirt? Spilled my juice so everyone stared at me instead?

What does it mean to be kind anyway?What does it mean to be kind to you or what does it mean for someone to be kind to you?

Maybe it’s giving. Making cookies for Mr. Rinaldi, who lives alone. Letting someone with smaller feet have my too-tight shoes. (He might win races in them, too.)

Maybe it’s helping. Putting dirty dishes in the sink. Like helping out mommy clean up after yourself. Picking up your laundry. Making your bed. Cleaning up after Otis, our class guinea pig. (He’s a messy eater.)

Maybe it’s paying attention. Telling Desmond I like his blue boots. Asking the new girl to be my partner. Listening to Aunt Franny’s stories. (Even the ones I’ve heard before.)

Being kind could also be saying nice things about someone. Complimenting someone. Telling your mom that she looks so pretty today. Picking her flowers.

Being kind should be easy. Like throwing away a wrapper or recycling a bottle. Or saying: Thank you! Bless you!

My mom says the quickest way to be kind is to use people’s names: Hey, Cayla. What’s new, Omar? Good afternoon, Rabbi Mandelbaum.

Being kind can be hard, too. Even when you know what to do. Teaching someone something I’m good at is tricky. (Even when I’m patient.)

Being kind could be also sharing with your siblings. And sticking up for someone when other kids aren’t kind is really hard  (And really scary.)

Maybe I can’t solve Tanisha’s grape juice problem. Maybe all I can do is sit by her in art class. And paint this picture for her. Because I know she likes purple, too.

Maybe I can only do small things. But my small things might join small things other people do. And, together, they could grow into something big.

 Something really big. So big that our kindness spill out of our school…spread throughout town. across the country…and go all the way…around the world.

Right back to Tanisha and me. So we can be kind. Again. And again.

And again.

“Be Kind by Pat Zietlow Miller” Book Read Aloud Youtube Video


So what conversation will you have with your child after reading this book?

Some questions you might like to ask are:

When Tanisha spilled grape juice?

Tanisha spilled grape juice yesterday.

Mom always tells me what?

Mom always tells me to be kind, so I tried.

what was my favorite class?

art was my favorite class.

Next: Watch Dr Dolittle Book Read Aloud

Recommended For You