Do your children cope with change? I’ve picked some books that you can share with your children to cope with the big and small changes in life.
There are many different transitions and times of change in a child’s life, some bigger than others.
Moving house, changing schools, starting a new school year, new baby, family illness. Then some smaller changes; new routine, new experiences, diet (eg. breast to bottle, weaning, new foods etc.) and last minute plan changes.
Change is inevitable
I’m sure there are many more changes children will have to experience. Positive experiences of coping with the ‘smaller’ changes will hopefully help children face the big changes/transitions.
Although, sometimes the smaller changes can be just as tough. Hell hath no fury like a toddler whose sandwiches have been cut into squares and not triangles! You may like to try these breathing techniques to help your children feel calm.
I really like this leaflet ‘Helping children cope with change’ from Early Education – there are some great tips.
Books that can help
There are some great books out there to support children (of all ages) with transitions. I’ve used many of them in my work with children and families over the years. Here’s a few of my favourites.
You may also like this – 7 confidence building books for children
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1. Help Your Dragon Deal With Change
Train Your Dragon To Handle Transitions. A Cute Children Story to Teach Kids How To Adapt To Change In Life. Having a pet dragon is very fun! He can sit, roll over, and play… He can candle a birthday cake, lit a campfire, or so many other cool things… But what if your dragon is afraid of change? You teach him that everything changes. Change happens, and life keeps changing. Instead of avoiding change, he needs to learn to adapt, anticipate, and enjoy the new experience when the change comes his way!
2. Marshall Armstrong Is New To Our School
Quirky, witty and brilliant, Marshall Armstrong is new to school and he definitely stands out from the crowd; but will he find it easy to make friends? A perfect first day at school story, perfect for all boys and girls starting school and meeting new friends.
3. The Koala Who Could
Meet Kevin. A koala who likes to keep things the same. Exactly the same. But sometimes change comes along whether we like it or not… And, as Kevin discovers, if you step outside your comfort zone and try new things, you might just surprise yourself!
4. A Year with Marmalade
A Year with Marmalade is a charming book about about losing friends and making new ones. Set against a beautiful backdrop of the turning seasons, this story of transition reminds us that change, while constant, is not always a bad thing.
5. Wemberly Worried
Wemberly worried about spilling her juice, about shrinking in the bathtub, even about snakes in the radiator. She worried morning, noon, and night. “Worry, worry, worry,” her family said. “Too much worry.” And Wemberly worried about one thing most of all: her first day of school. But when she meets a fellow worrywart in her class, Wemberly realizes that school is too much fun to waste time worrying!
6. The Kissing Hand
School is starting in the forest, but Chester Raccoon does not want to go. To help ease Chester’s fears, Mrs. Raccoon shares a family secret called the Kissing Hand to give him the reassurance of her love any time his world feels a little scary. Package includes a paperback book and a reading of the story on CD, with and without page-turn signals.
7. No Matter What
‘No matter what?’ Small asks. But what if he turns into a bug, or a crocodile, or even a grizzly bear? Small has all sorts of questions about love, and his mummy must reassure him that her love will never, ever run out – no matter what.
8. Little Tree
In the middle of a little forest, there lives a Little Tree who loves his life and the splendid leaves that keep him cool in the heat of long summer days. One by one the other trees drop their leaves, facing the cold of winter head on. But not Little Tree – he hugs his leaves as tightly as he can. Year after year Little Tree remains unchanged, despite words of encouragement from a squirrel, a fawn, and a fox, his leaves having long since turned brown and withered. A story that challenges each of us to have the courage to let go and to reach for the sun.
9. The Cow Who Climbed a Tree
Tina isn’t like the other cows. She believes that the sky is the limit, that everything is possible. But her sisters aren’t convinced – and when Tina tells them she has climbed a tree and met a dragon, they decide that her nonsense has gone too far. Off they go into the woods to find her . . . and soon discover a world of surprises! This book teaches children that trying new things can be brilliant.
10. Going Up!: The No-worries Guide to Secondary School
Going Up! addresses the most common anxieties children have about moving from primary to secondary school. This lively and humorous book will appeal to both boys and girls, and will also provide talking points for teachers and parents. The advice provided covers subjects such as uniform, classwork, homework, bullying, teachers and making friends.
11. Waiting for Baby
When you’re small, waiting for anything can seem to take a lifetime, especially when it’s a baby! There is so much to sort out for the new arrival – clothes, toys and a place to sleep. A new addition to any family is exciting, but the experience can also be worrying and confusing for siblings. Coping with the new situations and emotions that arise can be very challenging. This series of four board books deals with the anticipation of waiting for the new baby, the excitement of the arrival itself, and the beginnings of the special relationship that develops between siblings.
12. My New Home
Moving to a new home can sometimes feel scary and a little bit lonely, but this little racoon soon discovers that wherever you go adventures soon follow. This warm, thoughtful and reassuring story is written from the perspective of a young child. It’s perfect for children about to move house or start new school, but has a universal message for any child about the importance of kindness and acceptance when meeting someone new.
If nothing ever changed, there’d be no butterflies.