Editor’s note: Today, we thank American Life League’s Culture of Life Studies Program for their support of CatholicMom.com. Visit their website at cultureoflifestudies.com to learn more about educational supplements and free downloads to help you foster a culture of life in your classroom or home. Lisa Hendey
As dedicated parents, you’re always looking for ways to teach your children outside of the classroom. One valuable way to instill life lessons in your children is to read great books together as a family. Read along with your child and examine the themes, characters, and plot lines that support a culture of life. These books could include things like adoption, characters who stand up to defend those who are weaker than they, characters who give up their lives as selfless sacrifice for others, or an overall message that life is a gift from God. Through education and good literature, children learn about why human beings are so special and why we have to work hard to protect our innocent preborn brothers and sisters from abortion. Here is a list of books for all different age groups that show the dignity and worth of the human person:
You’re Here for a Reason by Nancy Tillman
This sweet picture book reminds young children of how each of us impacts our world. Follow a reading of this book by reminding your child how special she is and how unique and unrepeatable her talents are. Most of Nancy Tillman’s books follow this theme of being specially and uniquely created by God—a theme that all kids love to hear. If your children enjoy this book, be sure to check out Nancy Tillman’s other books On the Night You Were Born and I’d Know You Anywhere, My Love.
Perhaps the most famous children’s book with a pro-life theme, Horton Hears a Who charms readers with vibrant pictures and quirky characters who remind us that “a person’s a person, no matter how small.” This book teaches children the value of standing up for people who don’t have a voice. Would you like to use this and other pro-life picture books in your homeschool? Check out Life Is Precious, a unit study from the Culture of Life Studies Program which teaches children about the inherent dignity of the human person, the beauty of fetal development, standing up for others, and more.
Silas Marner by George Eliot
In this classic Victorian novel, suitable for middle school and older, George Eliot shows the difference each child makes in the world. Silas Marner, a recluse weaver, suddenly finds himself taking caring of a little orphan girl who worms her way into his greedy heart. Through adoption, Silas learns to love again and have hope for his future. Visit the Culture of Life Studies Program website to find a free downloadable discussion guide for Silas Marner.
The Giver by Lois Lowry
When 12-year-old Jonas is given the job of Receiver of Memory, he is bewildered by all the memories and knowledge that has been kept from the Community in the hopes of keeping its members safe from harm. But as Jonas learns more about war, famine, joy, colors, and snow, he begins to realize that the Community has also been kept ignorant of the difference between right and wrong. Faced with the killing of the innocent, Jonas must decide if he will keep silent and continue to live in the Community or if he will have the courage to tell the truth. Go to the Culture of Life Studies Program website for a free downloadable discussion guide for The Giver.
We want to teach our children about the beauty of the family, the miracle of human life, and the uniqueness of every human person. With all of the negative messages inundating our children, it’s no wonder that instilling these ideals can be a challenge without the proper materials. If we want to build a culture of life in our homes, we must give our children books that promote the pro-life message of the sacredness and dignity of all human beings. Through bedtime read-alouds or throughout the school day, you can subtly integrate culture-of-life themes into your child’s everyday activities.
American Life League’s Culture of Life Studies Program is an educational initiative from one of America’s largest pro-life organizations to help teach the culture of life in every subject and at every grade level. Our mission is to stress the culture of life as an integral part of every academic discipline and to help students become effective communicators of the gospel of life. Visit our website at cultureoflifestudies.com to learn more about our available supplements and free downloads and to learn how we can help you foster a culture of life in your classroom or home.
Images Credit American Life League, used with permission, Featured Image adapted from Coffee, Pixabay, Public Domain