Understanding Empathy

Empathy is a vital skill we all need to foster, so why not get your kids started young? Books can help to build understanding between different people and communities, with scientific research proving that reading improves sensitivity towards others.

What is empathy?

Empathy is the ability to imagine and understand other people’s emotions. It asks us to use reason and emotion to work out how they feel, and inspires us to help others once we know what they are feeling,

We encourage you to take these three steps to develop your own, and your children’s empathy:

READ -  because reading in itself can make us more empathetic

SHARE - because sharing books can connect us in new ways

DO - put empathy into action and make a difference in your community

Find the books in our British Council Library catalogues!


Footpath Flowers by JonArno Lawson


 A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness


The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time by Mark Haddon 

The Promise by Nicola Davies 

Charlotte’s Web by E.B.White