International Day of Peace: September 21, 2020

September 17, 2020 | Katherine McG

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September 21 is International Day of Peace, as declared by the United Nations

"Each year the International Day of Peace is observed around the world on 21 September. The General Assembly has declared this as a day devoted to strengthening the ideals of peace, both within and among all nations and peoples."

Peace is a concept that can be both big and small. It is an idea that is at once both simple and complex. And it is a belief that should be taught to everyone, no matter how young. 

In this post you'll find over a dozen books on the topic of peace, perfect for sharing with children.

Can You Say Peace?

Can You Say Peace? by Karen Katz (ages 0-10)

This book is an excellent place to start. It was written in celebration of "Peace Day" and teaches that peace is an ideal that can be globally shared. Author Karen Katz uses her signature style to take the reader on a journey around the world. As we travel from page to page, we meet different children and learn how to say peace in several languages. As a bonus, a list at the end of the book includes more countries with different words for peace.

The theme for 2020 is "Shaping Peace Together." Families and young readers can explore and discuss the different aspects together.



These books answer the question, "what does peace mean?"

What is peace

What is Peace? by Emma Damon (ages 0-12)

This book is available in dual-language editions, with English and Arabic, Tamil and Urdu.


What Is Peace

What Is Peace? by Wallace Edwards (ages 6-10) 



True stories and great role models.

Martin Luther King - The Peaceful Warrior by Ed Clayton

Martin Luther King: The Peaceful Warrior by Ed Clayton (ages 9-12)


People of Peace: 40 Inspiring Icons

People of Peace: 40 Inspiring Icons by Sandrine Mirza (ages 8-12)


Wangari's Trees of Peace by Jeanette Winter

Wangari's Trees of Peace: A True Story from Africa by Jeanette Winter (ages 5-8)


Taking Action

What you can do to make a difference.

Putting Peace First

Putting Peace First: Seven Commitments to Change the World by Eric David Dawson (ages 10-14+)


Peace  Love  Action - Everyday Acts of Goodness by Tanya Zabinski

Peace, Love, Action! Everyday Acts of Goodness by Tanya Zabinski (ages 10-14+)


Prayers and thoughts

Messages to reflect on.

Let There Be Peace

A Bedtime Prayer for Peace by Akila Dada (ages 3-6)


A Prayer for World Peace

A Prayer for World Peace by Jane Goodall (ages 6-12)


A Bedtime Prayer for Peace

Let There Be Peace: Prayers from Around the World by Jeremy Brooks (Ages 5-9)


Picture books

More stories about finding or making peace.

The Hawk and the Dove

The Hawk and the Dove by Paul Kor (ages 4-8)


The Peace Book

The Peace Book by Todd Parr (ages 3-6)


Green Lizards vs Red Rectangles

Green Lizards vs. Red Rectangles by Steve Antony (ages 3-6)


Officially, the International Day of Peace happens once a year but peace is something that children and families can practice and ponder every day. Does your family find peace through prayer or meditation? A minute of silence or a moment for mindfulness? A random act of kindness or a shared story? How will you say "peace" today? Tell us below in the comments.