Books that help children make sense of their feelings
Updated: Feb 21
This week we're devoting our book club to sharing books that help children understand and deal with different emotions. It seems like that this would be something they will learn as they grow, but often small children need help when they become overwhelmed by strong emotions. Sometimes a child might even find that the rush of adrenalin they get when in flight or fight, gets slightly addictive. Stories help us all make sense of what's happening in our world, and those that name emotions are incredibly helpful when you need to find a way to talk about how our little ones are feeling.
Although we include buy it now links for your convenience, please do try to support local book shops if you are lucky enough to have one, they will always order any book you want and usually get them in a matter of days.
B is for Breathe: The ABCs of Coping with Fussy and Frustrating Feelings
by Dr Melissa Munro Boyd
Age suitability - 12 months upwards
Not just focussing on one emotion, this alphabet book offers help with all kinds of feelings and is a super helpful guide for parents as well as a lovely book for younger children to make sense of how they feel.
The Colour Monster
by Anna Llenas
Age suitability - 0-5 years
For smaller children dealing with tricky feelings ranging from angry, happy, calm, sad and scared - this comes highly recommended. Colour Monster wakes up feeling very confused until a little girl shows him what each of his feelings mean through colour.
In My Heart
by Mackenzie Porter
Age suitability 2- 5 years
Working mothers have had a very unusual year, with children having more than enough of us over lockdown in many cases. Now with many of us also WFH, we're also able to do more nursery and school drop offs. But, when we do go back into the office, this is a lovely book that addresses how it feels to be apart from the ones you love the most. It also helps the guilt we feel as we rush off to be our working selves.
I miss you
by Pat Thomas
Age suitability 0 - 5 years
When a close friend or family member dies, it can be difficult for children to express their feelings. I Miss You helps boys and girls understand that death is a natural complement to life, and that grief and a sense of loss are normal feelings for them to have following a loved one's death. Written by a pscychotherapist and counsellor, the book teaches that it's okay to be sad, and it's okay to grieve.
by Derek Munson
Age suitability 0 - 7 years
Jealousy and friendship fall outs are a regular occurrence from a very early age. Here's a simple book to teach children about how to make peace with their 'enemies'.
I am stronger than anger
by Elizabeth Cole
Age suitability 0-12 years
Many is the time that we've had ridiculous but heartfelt pleas for things that are impossible, from getting a pony ( in a third floor flat ) to making the ice cream go back in time so it's safely returned to it's cone!
I am stronger than anger is a great book about a boy who wants his own koala but it's equally useful for any child who has spat the dummy about one thing or another. Nick learns from the animals in the zoo how to manage his angry feelings in ryhmes that both small, and bigger children will enjoy.