20 Quotes From Children’s Books Every Adult Should Know

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Some of life’s greatest lessons can be found in children’s literature, and ironically, most of us only realize this once we are no longer kids. The following quotes are some of our favorites from books we used to read, and they may very well send you on a trip down memory lane.

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1. “Promise me you’ll always remember that you are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem and smarter than you think” -A.A. Milne, Winnie the Pooh

Braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think. Christopher is trying to boost Pooh’s self-confidence so he can continue his brave quest to find honey. These are wise words for this tiny fictional bear, but they are also great words of encouragement for children. Sometimes people are too hard on themselves. This message is positive reinforcement.

The above quote is also attributed to Winnie the Pooh author A.A. Milne, who was probably quoting his son Christopher Robin who often told the characters these words in real life. They are still words that can be used today to encourage children and remind them that they’re capable of great things.

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The Complete Tales of Winnie-The-Pooh
  • Hardcover Book
  • Milne, A. A. (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 368 Pages - 10/01/1996 (Publication Date) - Dutton Books for Young Readers (Publisher)

2. “A person’s a person, no matter how small” -Dr. Seuss, Horton Hears a Who

One of the best things about Dr. Seuss is his ability to use rhyme and meter in writing for children on complex topics. Anyone who has kids knows that little ones can be cruel. They often pick on each other and repeat the things they hear without fully understanding them. This quote is aimed at children to remind them that everyone deserves respect, no matter how big or small, smart or dumb, popular or unpopular, etc., we all deserve to be treated with kindness and empathy.

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Horton Hears a Who!
  • This Certified Refurbished product is tested and certified to look and work like new. The refurbishing process includes functionality testing, basic cleaning, inspection, and repackaging. The product ships with all relevant accessories, a minimum 90-day warranty, and may arrive in a generic box.
  • Hardcover Book
  • Dr. Seuss (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 72 Pages - 08/12/1954 (Publication Date) - Random House Books for Young Readers (Publisher)

3. “No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted” -Aesop, The Lion and the Mouse

Even when you are kind to others it doesn’t always have an immediate impact. Kindness can be a one-time act or it can be something that lasts for years. The good thing is that even if you don’t see the impact of your kindness, someone might tell your future self about it. They might say “Remember when you did that thing and it made me feel better,” and then years later that person will tell your great-great grandchildren and they will note down in a family history journal how your kindness had an impact on someone you didn’t even know. Aesop is encouraging us to be kind to our fellow humans.

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The Lion & the Mouse
  • Hardcover Book
  • Pinkney, Jerry (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 40 Pages - 09/01/2009 (Publication Date) - Little, Brown Books for Young Readers (Publisher)

4. “How lucky I am to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard” – A.A. Milne, Winnie the Pooh

One of the hardest things to do in life is say goodbye to someone. We don’t want to let them go, but sometimes there’s some kind of obstacle keeping us apart (distance, time, etc.). It can be awful when you have to be away from the people you love, but it can also give you something to look forward to if they are coming back. This line is said by Pooh as he leaves his friends after lunch at Piglet’s house. He was probably quite excited about seeing them again because of how hard that goodbye was for everyone.

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The Complete Tales of Winnie-The-Pooh
  • Hardcover Book
  • Milne, A. A. (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 368 Pages - 10/01/1996 (Publication Date) - Dutton Books for Young Readers (Publisher)

5. “If you have good thoughts, they will shine out of your face like sunbeams and you will always look lovely” – Roald Dahl, The Twits

When you have a positive outlook on life, your aura shines bright. It’s almost as if the light of your soul is emanating from deep inside. That is what others see when they look at you and that brightness can change their day for the better.

The Twits
  • Dahl, Roald (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 112 Pages - 08/16/2007 (Publication Date) - Viking Books for Young Readers (Publisher)

6. “You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose.” -Dr. Seuss, Oh the Places You’ll Go!

When you are young it’s so easy to feel like you have no control over life. There is so much out of your hands and all you can do is sit back and hope for the best. This quote is for when that time in your life is ending. Life gives you the opportunity to take your destiny into your own hands and decide what you want to do with it.

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Oh, the Places You'll Go!  
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  • Hardcover Book
  • Seuss, Dr. (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 56 Pages - 01/22/1990 (Publication Date) - Random House Books for Young Readers (Publisher)

7. “How much good inside a day? Depends how good you live ’em. How much love inside a friend? Depends how much you give ’em.” -Shel Silverstein, A Light in the Attic

This is a quote about friendship. It reminds us that friendships are built by giving and receiving love. You can’t give what you don’t have, so if you want to make friends with someone you need to open up your heart in order for them to do the same.

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A Light in the Attic Special Edition with 12 Extra Poems
  • Hardcover Book
  • Silverstein, Shel (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 185 Pages - 09/22/2009 (Publication Date) - HarperCollins (Publisher)

8. “It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.” -Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, The Little Prince

This quote sums up the whole point of The Little Prince. It’s about how we should approach life with our heart more than our eyes. If you look at something with your eyes only then you are not see the bigger picture.

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The Little Prince
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  • Antoine de Saint-Exupéry (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 96 Pages - 05/15/2000 (Publication Date) - Mariner Books (Publisher)

9. “There’s no place like home” -L. Frank Braum, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz

There’s nothing like home. It’s the place where everyone is accepted unconditionally and nobody can break that bond. You are always yourself around family, you don’t have to pretend to be someone else or worry about what they think of you if you’re different from them. You can be yourself and you know they will love you for it.

10. How do you spell ‘love’?” -A.A. Milne, Winnie the Pooh

“Piglet: How do you spell ‘love’?”

“Pooh: You don’t spell it…you feel it.” -A.A. Milne, Winnie the Pooh

This is a quote about love and how you can’t put it into words. Love is something that we all know and feel deep inside, but if we tried to explain it with words then it would never be enough.

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The Complete Tales of Winnie-The-Pooh
  • Hardcover Book
  • Milne, A. A. (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 368 Pages - 10/01/1996 (Publication Date) - Dutton Books for Young Readers (Publisher)

11. “Why did you do all this for me?” -E.B. White, Charlotte’s Web

“Why did you do all this for me?’ he asked. ‘I don’t deserve it. I’ve never done anything for you.’ ‘You have been my friend,’ replied Charlotte. ‘That in itself is a tremendous thing.” -E.B. White, Charlotte’s Web

Friendship doesn’t need any kind of payment or reward in order to be valued. if someone does something nice for you then they are already bringing you joy by just being around you, so there is no reason to thank them. A friendship brings joy into your life and you should be thankful for that.

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Charlotte's Web (Trophy Newbery)
  • E. B. White (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 184 Pages - 04/10/2012 (Publication Date) - HarperCollins (Publisher)

12. “Numbing the pain for a while will only make it worse when you finally feel it.” -J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

When you’re going through a tough time you can distract yourself and that usually helps. However, this quote reminds us that sooner or later we will have to face the pain and deal with it head on. That is the only way to make sure that you come out of something stronger than before.

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Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (4)
  • Wizard
  • Magic
  • Quidditch
  • High School
  • Coming of Age

13. “The moment where you doubt whether you can fly, you cease forever to be able to do it.” -J.M. Barrie, Peter Pan

This is a quote about believing in yourself and your abilities. Sometimes we don’t think that we are good enough for something but this quote reminds us that if there is doubt then there will not be any progress. If you want to accomplish your dreams, you have to be able to bet on yourself.

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Peter Pan
  • Barrie, J. M. (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 166 Pages - 06/01/2019 (Publication Date) - SDE Classics (Publisher)

14. “Listen to the mustn’ts, child.” -Shel Silverstein, Where The Sidewalk Ends

“Listen to the mustn’ts, child. Listen to the don’ts. Listen to the shouldn’ts, the impossibles, the won’ts. Listen to the never haves, then listen close to me… Anything can happen, child. Anything can be.” -Shel Silverstein, Where The Sidewalk Ends

Your imagination is your most powerful tool. By just imagining something you give it the possibility of becoming real, so don’t underestimate how creative and powerful your mind is. You can achieve anything if you believe in yourself and work hard for your dreams.

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Where the Sidewalk Ends: Poems and Drawings
  • Hardcover Book
  • Silverstein, Shel (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 176 Pages - 02/18/2014 (Publication Date) - HarperCollins (Publisher)

15. “Above all watch with glittering eyes the whole world around you because the greatest secrets are always hidden in the most unlikely places.” -Roald Dahl, The Minpins

This is a quote about noticing things. Sometimes opportunities come along when we least expect them so it’s important to be prepared for anything. We should take advantage of every chance that comes our way because sometimes they open doors that we never knew existed.

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The Minpins
  • Dahl, Roald (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 32 Pages - 09/03/2009 (Publication Date) - Viking Books for Young Readers (Publisher)

16. “Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It’s not.” -Dr. Seuss, The Lorax

This is a quote about caring for the things around you. If someone like Dr. Seuss isn’t trying to make the world a better place then no one will try to change it for the better. We can all make a difference if we try.

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The Lorax (Classic Seuss)
  • The Lorax
  • Hardcover Book
  • Dr. Seuss (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 72 Pages - 08/12/1971 (Publication Date) - Random House Books for Young Readers (Publisher)

17. “In every job that must be done, there is an element of fun. You find the fun and snap! The job’s a game.” -P.L. Travers, Mary Poppins

There will always be hard times in your life but if you can manage to have some fun then it won’t seem so bad. This is a quote about seeking the positive to make the hard times easier. If you think about it, there is always a bit of fun in every job or situation if you look for it.

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Mary Poppins
  • Travers, P. L. (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 208 Pages - 05/05/2015 (Publication Date) - Clarion Books (Publisher)

18. “The true courage is in facing danger when you are afraid.” -Frank Baum, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz

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This is a quote about being brave even when things seem impossible. Sometimes we get too scared to do what we have to do and run away from our responsibilities but the true heroes are the ones who can face their fears and accomplish what needs to be done.

19.”It’s no use to go back to yesterday, because I was a different person then.” -Lewis Carroll, Alice In Wonderland

This is a quote about the importance of being yourself. We all change with time and sometimes we even seem like a completely different person depending on the situation that we are in, but it’s important not to lose your individuality. You have to remember that you are special, no matter how much you change.

Alice in Wonderland: The Original 1865 Edition With Complete Illustrations By Sir John Tenniel (A Classic Novel of Lewis Carroll)
  • Carroll, Lewis (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 101 Pages - 05/06/2021 (Publication Date) - Independently published (Publisher)

20. “Sometimes, said Pooh, the smallest things take up the most room in your heart.” -A.A. Milne, Winnie-the-Pooh

We all have different sides to our personality and we sometimes change depending on who we’re with but what matters is that even though we can’t help changing, we should always remember the things that matter and keep them locked inside our hearts. These things are what make us who we are.

Sale
The Complete Tales of Winnie-The-Pooh
  • Hardcover Book
  • Milne, A. A. (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 368 Pages - 10/01/1996 (Publication Date) - Dutton Books for Young Readers (Publisher)

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