Skip to content

How to parent smarter not harder.

View all articles

Thinking Parenting Blog

Top 10 books for teaching children about sex

Talking to children about bodies and bits and how they fit together isn’t always easy. The earlier you start and the more relaxed you are about it, the easier it will be (see Talking to children about sex, bodies and relationships). The hardest bit is getting started. Luckily, there are some great books for teaching children about sex, bodies books for teaching children about sexand families, which can make launching into those conversations much easier. There’s no need to buy them – your local library will have lots of books for teaching children about sex (and that way you can check them out and find exactly the right one for your family).

To help you along, here’s my top ten list of the best books for teaching children about sex, puberty and relationships (and other things we don’t like talking about).

1. Where Willy Went (by Nicholas Allen)

books for teaching children about sex
My personal favourite – it’s a jolly good story that just happens to be about a sperm….


2. Hair In Funny Places (by Babette Cole)

books for teaching children about sex
Great artwork, featuring a girl, her teddy bear and Mr and Mrs Hormone.



3. There’s A House Inside My Mummy (Orchard Picturebooks) (by Giles Andreae)

books for teaching children about sex
Gentle and simple, perfect for preparing young children for a new brother or sister. (Check out these other ideas for books for preparing a toddler for a new baby too!).


4. Let’s Talk: About Girls, Boys, Babies, Bodies, Families & Friends (Lets Talk) (by Robie H. Harris)

books for teaching children about sexThe Let’s Talk series has a range of books for teaching children about sex, puberty, and families. They are factual and quite detailed and cover those topics that you might be a little scared of broaching. Ideal for starting conversations or for leaving in your child’s bedroom for him/her to pick up when interested.

5. Mummy Laid An Egg! (Red Fox Picture Books) (by Babette Cole)

books for teaching children about sex
A great book for turning the tables on parental embarrassment – no nonsense, straightforward and dispels silly myths people invent to avoid saying exactly where babies do come from…..


6. King and King (by Linda De Haan)

books for teaching children about sex
A great read with fab pictures that just happens to feature a prince who marries another prince rather than a princess.


7. The Family Book (by Todd Parr)

books for teaching children about sex
A celebration of families and all the different shapes, sizes and forms that families can take.


8. Ready, Set, Grow!: A What’s Happening to My Body? Book for Younger Girls (by Lynda Madaras)

books for teaching children about sex
All about girls’ bodies and puberty. Detailed, but written in a sympathetic way that tackles lots of common fears and worries. Perfect for preparing girls for puberty or for girls who have started puberty early. Versions for older girls (What’s Happening to My Body? Book for Girls: Revised Edition)
and for boys (The “What’s Happening to My Body?” Book for Boys)
also available.

9. Made with Love: How Babies are Made (by Kate Petty)

books for teaching children about sex
All the key facts of how babies are made, in simple language alongside child-friendly illustrations.



10. It’s Okay to be Different (by Todd Parr)

books for teaching children about sex
Not so much about sex and as about diversity in general. A great book for introducing young children to the idea that people (and bodies) come in all shapes, sizes and preferences, and that’s great!

Have you tried any of these books for teaching children about sex? How did it go? Or have I missed out your favourite? What tips would you share about talking to children about bodies and bits? Please do let us know – and check out this resource list for more advice on talking to children about tricky issues!

This is not a sponsored post – these are all books that I personally recommend! It does however contain affiliate links, which means that if you click through from this post to Amazon and buy one of the books I will receive a small fee. See Disclosure Notice for more info.

Share this article:

The Work/Parent Switch.

By Anita Cleare

Not sure where to start?

Practical tips on how to be the parent your child needs and create happy family dynamics (but still do your job!)

16 responses to “Top 10 books for teaching children about sex”

  1. Thanks for this! My boys are 14 and 11, so I think I’ve missed the boat with them, definitely with the eldest. But I need to talk to my 9yo daughter and I don’t know where to start! Could you recommend which books would be suitable for a 9yo girl?

    • AnitaCleare says:

      I would go for ‘Ready, Set, Grow’ by Lynda Madaras or check out the ‘Let’s Talk’ series by Robie Harris for a 9 year-old girl. The FPA website ( has some great leaflets you can download too!

  2. I’m SO glad to have stumbled upon this post. My daughter is only 3 but I want to get some books so that it all seems normal and there’s no big discussion/embarrassment about things. Thank you for sharing!

  3. Mrs Tubbs says:

    We’ve missed the boat here as the Tubblet is now 11, but these look excellent

  4. Hannah Parker says:

    This is such an interesting and helpful post, Anita! We’ve done the awkward tiptoe dance around the subject with Gabby when I was pregnant with Reuben – Mike even attempted to drawer a diagram. I wish we’d had this list of resources then!!

    Thanks for linking up to #TheList xx

  5. I think this is great take some tips and clever phrases to explain what sex is to your kids. But God, King and King ?? Homosexual experience for 9 old? No joke?

    • AnitaCleare says:

      Gay couples are part of the fabric of modern society so I personally think that helping children reflect on all the different types of families is totally appropriate. Obviously the book doesn’t go into any sexual details, it just happens to be about a prince who doesn’t fall in love with a princess. If you had a gay couple in your extended family or friends and wanted a way to discuss that with a 9 year old, that book could be a really useful?

  6. Claire says:

    Some great suggestions here. My girls have read a few of these with me and we found it a great way to start a ‘natural’ conversation.

  7. Brilliant list, I’ll definitely be looking these up for when the time comes with my kids. thanks for sharing with #readwithme

  8. Catherine says:

    Thank you for putting together this great list of books – we love the Babette Cole book 🙂


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Related Articles

photos of book covers with play ideas for busy parents in article by parenting expert Anita Cleare

Play ideas for busy parents

Let’s face it, the pandemic has been more than a little challenging for working parents with young children. What with homeschooling and lockdowns and blurred boundaries between work and home,...

Book cover of The Power of Showing Up in book review by parenting expert Anita Cleare

Book Review: The Power of Showing Up

During the pandemic, I have talked to lots of parents about the impact of simply showing up for our kids. Reliably, repeatedly, just being there – a calm, safe haven for them in these troubled...

a photo of book covers to illustrate article on a list of useful books to help kids recover from lockdown

Books to help kids recover from lockdown

Regular readers will know that I advocate snuggling up with a story as a brilliant way to raise sensitive issues with children indirectly and engage them in thinking about ideas. So you won’t...

Best books to teach children social skills: phot of 'I'll Wait, Mr Panda book cover

Best books to teach children social skills (2-7yrs)

The absolute best way for children to learn social skills is through practice. Young children needs lots of opportunities to play with other kids – older, younger and the same age. There will...