Choosing inspirational quotes for kids is all about finding that sweet spot. You know? Where motivation and non-cringey meet. This can be easier said than done.
Sure, you’ve cultivated your own set of go-to’s for troubling times, but what appeals to you and what appeals to your little human are oftentimes two very different things.
Many a mama has had the experience of trying to inspire, only to be met with a raised eyebrow, a condescending giggle, or even a groan. Yup, tough crowd.
On the flip side, finding quotes for kids that nudge them into productivity, power, and passion can be a real parenting win.
With that in mind, we’ve put together a toolkit of inspiring quotes for kids to whip out in a variety of circumstances—from big events to meltdowns to conversations around diversity and inclusion.
50 motivational quotes for kids
10 Inspiring quotes for kids who have had a bad day
- “There is always light.
Only if we are brave enough to be it.” ― Amanda Gorman
- “I did then what I knew how to do. Now that I know better, I do better.” — Maya Angelou
- “I avoid looking forward or backward, and try to keep looking upward.” — Charlotte Bronvtë
- “If I cannot do great things, I can do small things in a great way.” — Martin Luther King Jr.
- “Just keep swimming.” — Dory from Finding Nemo
- “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” — Thomas Edison
- “It’s always too soon to quit.” — Norman Vincent Peale
- “And why do we fall? So we can learn to pick ourselves back up again.” — Batman Begins
- “The very things that hold you down are going to lift you up.” — Timothy Mouse, Dumbo
- “Courage doesn’t always roar. Sometimes courage is the little voice at the end of the day that says I’ll try again tomorrow.” ― Mary Anne Radmacher
10 Motivational quotes for kids before a big day
- “The moment you doubt whether you can fly, you cease forever to be able to do it.”
― J.M. Barrie, The Complete Adventures of Peter Pan
- “Never give up on what you really want to do. The person with big dreams is more powerful than one with all the facts.” ― Albert Einstein
- “Just believe in yourself. Even if you don’t, pretend that you do and, at some point, you will.” — Venus Williams
- “The people who are crazy enough to believe they can change the world are the ones who do.” — Steve Jobs
- “Practice isn’t the thing you do once you’re good. It’s the thing you do that makes you good.” — Malcolm Gladwell
- “I’ve missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. 26 times I’ve been trusted to take the game-winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.” – Michael Jordan
- “Nothing is impossible. The word itself says, ‘I’m possible!’” — Audrey Hepburn
- “You’re braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.” — A.A. Milne
- “Experience is not what happens to you; it’s what you do with what happens to you.” — Aldous Huxley
- “True happiness comes from the joy of deeds well done, the zest of creating things new.” — Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
10 Inspirational quotes for kids in school
1.“ The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.” — Dr. Seuss, I Can Read With My Eyes Shut!
2. “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.” — Nelson Mandela
3. “Once you learn to read, you will be forever free.” — Frederick Douglass
4. “Education is not the learning of facts, but the training of the mind to think.” — Albert Einstein
5. “The expert at anything was once a beginner.” — Helen Hayes
6. “There is more treasure in books than in all the pirate’s loot on Treasure Island.” — Walt Disney
7. “Educating yourself does not mean that you were stupid in the first place; it means that you are intelligent enough to know that there is plenty left to learn.” — Melanie Joy
8. “If my mind can conceive it, if my heart can believe it, then I can achieve it.” — Muhammad Ali
9. “Let us remember: One book, one pen, one child and one teacher can change the world.” — Malala Yousafzai
10. “Education is the passport to the future, for tomorrow belongs to those who prepare for it today.” — Malcolm X
10 Encouraging quotes for kids who are having trouble with other kids
- “If you want to lift yourself up, lift up someone else.” — Booker T. Washington
- “A friend is someone who gives you total freedom to be yourself.” — Jim Morrison
- “Love yourself first and everything else falls into line. You really have to love yourself to get anything done in this world.” — Lucille Ball
- “Remember no one can make you feel inferior without your consent.” — Eleanor Roosevelt
- “Always be a first-rate version of yourself, instead of a second-rate version of somebody else.” — Judy Garland
- “What if the kid you bullied at school, grew up, and turned out to be the only surgeon who could save your life?” ― Lynette Mather
- “Right is Right even if nobody does it. Wrong is wrong even if everybody is wrong about it.” ― G K Chesterton
- “If you see someone without a smile, give them one of yours.” — Dolly Parton
- “Be a rainbow in someone else’s cloud.” — Maya Angelou
- “You’re imperfect, and you’re wired for struggle, but you are worthy of love and belonging.” — Brene Brown
10 Motivational quotes for kids about diversity and inclusion
- “We may have different religions, different languages, different colored skin, but we all belong to one human race. We all share the same basic values.” — Kofi Annan
- “Change the world by being yourself.” — Amy Poehler
- “We all can dance when we find music we love.” — Giles Andreae
- “Be a little kinder than you have to.” — E. Lockhart
- “Never believe that a few caring people can’t change the world. For, indeed, that’s all who ever have.” — Margaret Mead
- “There’s no person in the whole world like you, and I like you just the way you are.” — Mr. Rogers
- “Do your little bit of good where you are; it’s those little bits of good put together that overwhelm the world.” — Desmond Tutu
- “Three things in human life are important. The first is to be kind. The second is to be kind. And the third is to be kind.” — Henry James
- “You can always, always give something, even if it is only kindness!” — Anne Frank
- “Tenderness and kindness are not signs of weakness and despair, but manifestations of strength and resolution.” ― Kahlil Gibran
▶️ Read also: Our 40 favorite inspirational motherhood quotes