16 Children’s Books About Friendship

Friendships are vital to children and school. There is no better way to start classroom discussions on making new friends, supporting and appreciating friends, and overcoming friendship challenges than with a great book. We gathered a collection of friendship books for your school library.

  1. Circle Round by Anne Sibley OBrien

A simple counting text tells about the different kinds of kids who meet at the playground. The pictures will give your class a lot to talk about, and you can use them to start a brainstorming session about ways to play with everyone. 

  1. Don’t Hug Doug: (He Doesn’t Like It) by Carrie Finison

Doug enjoys many things, such as his rock collection, harmonica bands, and his large group of pals, but he finds hugs to be a way “too squashy.”Reach for this book if you’re looking for children’s books on friendship, respecting boundaries, or different methods to show a friend you care.

  1. The Pirate Tree by Brigita Orel

Sam doesn’t know what Agu’s game of pirates is about, but Agu convinces him with his real-life experience sailing. This beautiful and thought-provoking book shows how new friends can bring fresh learning and fun.

  1. We Laugh Alike/Juntos nos reímos: A Story That’s Part Spanish, Part English, and a Whole Lot of Fun- Carmen T. Bernier-Grand

You should add this special book about friendship to your shelves if you or your students speak Spanish despite language difficulties. (But even if you don’t, you can still enjoy it with kids and use the glossary as a guide.) Two groups of friends find things they have in common at the park: speaking English and Spanish, making gestures, and being open-minded.

  1. A Thousand White Butterflies by Jessica Betancourt-Perez

As a newcomer in the United States from Colombia, Isabella’s first day of school, her “make-new-friends day,” is canceled by a snowstorm. A chance meeting shows her there are various ways to meet new people and play with them. This touching narrative on friendship is one of our favorites.

  1. The Someone New by Jill Twiss

A newcomer to Jitterbug, the chipmunk’s woods causes her some hesitancy, but her pals can convince her of the benefits of accepting “someone new.”Any student may appreciate this novel and relate to its topics, which is a sign of a wonderful book.

  1. In a Jar by Deborah Marcero

Together with his buddy Evelyn, Llewellyn collects their priceless memories in jars. It’s depressing when Evelyn moves away—until they figure out how to use their unique memories to keep in touch. We adore this quiet, lovely children’s book on friendship for the variety of thoughts and discussions it elicits.

  1. Evelyn Del Rey is Moving Away by Meg Medina

We keep returning to this lovely book for all of the literacy mini-lessons. Even though Daniela and Evelyn are close friends, it isn’t easy to accept that Evelyn is moving. Their touching exchanges illustrate how friendship can endure adversity and support real-life friends in a similar predicament.

  1. Frank and Bean by Jamie Michalak

Many early chapter books feature great friendship depictions (Frog and Toad, Mr. Putter and Tabby, Narwhal and Jelly, etc.). Frank and Bean are as dissimilar as can be, but that becomes a mutual benefit. For additional friendship-themed works for young readers, see 18 Standout Graphic Novels for Elementary School.

  1. All About Friends by Felicity Brooks

For many kids, using stories to initiate dialogues about friendship works, but for others, a more direct approach may be better. This nonfiction book about friendship is one of the most comprehensive. It teaches how to utilize polite body language, start conversations with friends, and handle disagreements using simple words and charming visuals.

  1. Meesha Makes Friends by Tom Percival

Except when she’s “friending” craft items, Meesha never feels she gets it exactly right. She discovers, however, that spending time with a buddy while doing something she loves may be twice as enjoyable when Josh softly reaches out. Share this tale to commemorate the experiences of children who find it difficult to connect with others.

  1. The Hike by Alison Farrell

Three buddies undertake a grand outdoor trip. The hike is a success because of the unique strengths that each person contributes to it.

  1. How to Apologize by David LaRochelle

A vital component of friendship is making amends when you make a mistake. While teaching readers precisely what the title promises, this book simultaneously manages to be lighthearted and serious.

  1. My Best Friend by Julie Fogliano

A joyful, childlike celebration of a friendship that is unquestionably destined to exist. Both kids and adults will find this one moving!

  1. 48 Grasshopper Estates by Sara de Waal

Sicily is a STEM genius who invents stuff from household items—making friends? That’s tough. As Sicily tries, a nearby boy’s story is illustrated. This is a lovely depiction of how friendship may grow in unexpected places and reminds kids to take others’ experiences into account.

  1. The Shadow Elephant by Nadine Roberts

While friendship is frequently a lot of fun, being a friend occasionally requires support in difficult situations. Instinctively, Mouse understands that Elephant needs space to process his emotions and a peaceful buddy to repose at his side.

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