25 In Resilient Kids

5 Reasons Why “Anne of Green Gables” is an Excellent Role Model for Your Tween

Anne of Green Gables - PBS / Mind Over Latte Review

The novel, Anne of Green Gables was first published over 100 years ago. It describes the life of an orphan who was lucky enough to find a loving home in Green Gables.  So why would your tween want to read it? How could your child identify with Anne and look up to her as a role model?

Well… Anne will teach your child about the real meaning of hardship. She’ll show her what grit and determination really look like. She’ll help her break from the gender-specific roles. She will prove that the power of positive thinking can save you in a difficult situation. And finally, she will show your daughter what true and genuine friendship looks like.

So yah… I think your tween could learn a lot from Anne.

Anne’s Got Grit.

As we all know, Anne’s life has not been all rosy. She is an orphan who bounces from foster home to foster home. When she initially finds a home, it is as a help to a mother with a drunk husband and a heap of children. She has to earn her keep from the get-go. Yet, she does what she has to do to survive. It’s true that in our world, these kinds of hardships are rarely heard of, but our children have to deal with their own types of problems. The fact that Anne persevered through hers, make her an inspiration to many girls to this day.

Not only does she work hard, but she also studies hard. Anne doesn’t have all the resources our kids have today, yet it doesn’t stop her from being the best in her class. She uses the books and advice given to her by her teachers, she attends extra classes and she studies for her tests. Yes, her school is smaller than an average classroom today and the material she is expected to cover is significantly different than that of today’s students, but nonetheless, she uses what little resources she has to become an independent woman.  And that’s exactly what I want my daughter to learn – use what you resources you have to further your education and eventually financial independence.

Anne is Not Afraid of Doing a Man’s Job.

Anne not only helps Marilla around the house, but she also helps Matthew around the farm. As we know, Matthew wanted a boy to help him around the farm, but he got Anne. Anne is not afraid to get her hands dirty.  She breaks the boundaries of traditional male / female roles. Through that Anne shows that girls can do anything boys can do. Isn’t that something we, as moms, are trying to tell our girls today?  If Anne broke out of that mould during her time, it surely encourages our girls to do the same in our times.

Anne Has a Wonderful Imagination.

Anne is easily inspired by books and everything that surround her. When she is all alone in her room in Green Gables, she imagines it to be a very elegant room, filled with expensive furniture and silky bedding. She herself, is no longer Anne Shirley, but rather (as she tells Marilla) Lady Cordelia Fitzgerald.

No-o-o, it’s not exactly my name, but I would love to be called Cordelia. It’s such a perfectly elegant name.

Even though she can be overly dramatic at times, she is also very creative and inventive. These days, children don’t exercise their imagination enough, so having a role model like Anne, to show my daughter that is OK to “run away” into the world of books or make-believe lands is, in my opinion, a blessing.

You May Also Like

Easy Goal Setting and Vision Board for Kids

She uses her imagination to create a pleasant world during the time of hardship. It’s like a coping mechanism to help her get through a tough time. She uses her imagination in a very positive way, pretending she is far, far away from her worries. I may not necessarily want my tween to daydream all the time, as it will easily get her into trouble, but Anne could most certainly teach my child that you can take a breather and cope with an unpleasant situation more easily if you imagine it to be something more positive.

Anne Experiences a True Friendship.

Ann has only one friend, a “bosom friend” if you will, Diana Barry. She wants to fit in with other teens, but Diana’s opinion is what matters to Anne. They spend countless hours together at school, playing after school and on weekends, and going to special events together. They are true to one another and honest with each other. Friendship is not the highest number beside the “friends’ icon on Facebook or most followers on Instagram. It’s the bond that can only be established when two people spend time together. That’s what I wish for my daughter. I want her to experience this type of genuine and true friendship.

I’ve dreamed of meeting her all my life … a bosom friend — an intimate friend, you know — a really kindred spirit to whom I can confide my inmost soul.

Friendship is racing with someone into the bedroom and jumping on the bed with them only to realized that it is occupied by an elderly aunt. It’s taking week-long trips together. It’s going to a picnic and it is having someone there to experience things with for the first time. A friend is someone telling you to get over your pride and see how much someone else cares about you, even if they themselves have a crush on that person. That’s exactly the kind of friendship Anne has with Diana. It requires work and commitment, but it is truly worth it.  And that’s the kind of friendship I want my tween to experience.

And Yet, Anne is a Typical Tween / Teen

As different as Anne’s life is from your tween’s life, she is still very relatable. She dreams about wearing the latest fashion – a beautiful dress with puffy sleeves. If your tween is anything like mine, she’d prefer to spend $100 on the latest and greatest pair of jeans rather than buy herself five pair of jeans and wear a different one every single day of the school week.

She is insecure about her looks – she hates her red hair (and she does something about it). Come on, you can’t tell me that your tween is not starting to experiment with makeup. Maybe a bit of lipgloss or mascara? Or has she, like Anne, tried to dye her hair (with a bit more success, I hope)?

Even though she is almost a century old, Anne of Green Gables can teach our kids about hard work, perseverance and true friendship. Click To Tweet

Anne is excited about being invited to Diana’s party and staying over for a sleepover.  Ok, so maybe the party Anne attended wasn’t exactly the kind of a party our tweens would consider fun, but nonetheless, having a girls’ spa night or a movie night and a sleepover at your best friend’s house is definitely something my tween looks forward to every once in a while.  

I think, even without the cool gadgets or technology Anne had a pretty good life. Simple, but fulfilling. Full of hardship and hard work, but also full of love, friendship and laughter. So I think that my daughter, and yours as well, could learn a thing or two from Anne.

A classic that still teaches us lessons to this day - Anne of Green Gables is an amazing read for your teen and tween. #MindOverLatte #books #teenreads #classics #greatreads

You Might Also Like


  • Reply
    October 16, 2018 at 5:23 pm

    Anne of Green Gables was one of my favorite books as a child (and still is as an adult!) I wish it was required reading in middle schools because the lessons in it are amazing and so applicable to tweens/teens today.

    • Reply
      October 16, 2018 at 5:44 pm

      I couldn’t agree more 🙂

  • Reply
    Patty Hancock
    October 4, 2018 at 9:08 am

    I had the pleasure and privilege of interviewing Ella Ballentine. She is a very sweet and intelligent girl.

    • Reply
      October 4, 2018 at 9:12 am

      That’s fantastic! I’m envious 🙂 She seems like a wonderful young lady.

  • Reply
    August 21, 2018 at 5:06 pm

    I know you mention this is great for teens and tweens…do you think it’s too old for my first grader? We are always looking for chapter books to read together at night.

    • Reply
      August 21, 2018 at 7:36 pm

      Due to the language thetas used, I think it may be a bit hard for her to read on her own. But you can always read it to her and I’m confident she will understand most of it. I read it to my daughter (along with “The Secret Garden” when she was in grade 2 or 3 and then she read it on her own in grade 5. Happy reading 🙂

  • Reply
    August 18, 2018 at 10:44 am

    This will be the next book I have my kids read.

  • Reply
    February 22, 2018 at 12:44 pm

    I haven’t heard of this book. I would love to share this with my sisters who have kids.

  • Reply
    February 22, 2018 at 4:14 am

    Love Anne of Green Gables! I haven’t read this book before. Can’t wait to read this.

  • Reply
    Angela Ricardo Bethea
    February 22, 2018 at 1:09 am

    This is such a great post. I will definitely share this with niece. They are totally a huge fan of Anne of Green Gables.

  • Reply
    Marissa Zurfluh
    February 21, 2018 at 10:32 pm

    I had forgotten all about Anne of Green Gables! This makes me so excited. I couldn’t agree more that she’s a great role model!

  • Reply
    Wendy Polisi
    February 21, 2018 at 10:32 pm

    Anne is one of the things I have cherished sharing with my girls. I loved it as a young gal and they now love it as well.

  • Reply
    Adrianne Betz
    February 21, 2018 at 10:31 pm

    I grew up on those movies. I definitely learned some wonderful lessons from them and can’t wait until my girl is old enough to understand them.

  • Reply
    Arielle Joy
    February 21, 2018 at 4:57 pm

    I never actually read Anne of Green Gables growing up. It sounds like a wonderful way to make a positive impact on children

  • Reply
    February 21, 2018 at 11:09 am

    lovely story, neer heard of this book before. I guess I would recommend this to my little child once she started reading.

  • Reply
    Sarah Bailey
    February 20, 2018 at 8:19 pm

    I have to admit I loved reading this when I was younger, you’ve actually made me want to try and find my copy and have a read again.

  • Reply
    February 20, 2018 at 6:56 pm

    I love Ann of Green Gables and many of the other books of that “era”. They show that life is what you make of it. A time when youth used their imaginations and enjoyed simple pleasures…and I believe that they truly had more appreciation of all the “gifts” that family offered them.

  • Reply
    February 20, 2018 at 2:18 pm

    Definitely need to get this book for my daughter! She already has a lot of the same qualities as Anne!!!

  • Reply
    February 20, 2018 at 1:17 pm

    This needs to be the next book that I read with my boys. It sounds like a fascinating book.

  • Reply
    Joanna Davis
    February 20, 2018 at 8:04 am

    I love Anne, she is indeed such a role model for her strong will of finding her own place in this world and be happy. And that’s family for her. I enjoyed the series so much.

  • Reply
    February 20, 2018 at 7:30 am

    What a beautiful review of the book! Honestly, I read the whole post as it was engaging and not boring. May be because I have a teenager daughter too. I would love her to read Anne’s story!

  • Reply
    August 3, 2017 at 10:02 pm

    It was the book my mom gave me for my 9th birthday. I loved the series so much that some of the books are barely intact. Still have the books. If I had a girl, I’d gift the books to her.

  • Reply
    August 3, 2017 at 7:59 pm

    I loved Anne of Green Gables! Can;t; wait to share it with my kids!

  • Reply
    June 8, 2017 at 12:55 pm

    Love this <3 my mom tells me that the 'e' in my name came from her 🙂

    • Reply
      June 8, 2017 at 5:26 pm

      That’s awesome! “A-n-n looks absolutely dreadful; but Anne with an “e” is quite distinguished.” 🙂

    What Do You Think? Please share here...