Skip to content

How to parent smarter not harder.

View all articles

Thinking Parenting Blog

Books to help children cope with change

Change can be difficult for children. Children’s life experiences are much more limited than ours so they may not have learnt strategies for facing change confidently. And they often don’t have the reassurance of remembering previous occasions when they have faced big changes and adapted successfully. Young children, especially, thrive on predictability so can be stressed by even minor changes to their routine (see Helping children cope with change). Reading story books to help children cope with change can offer reassurance that change is ok and help start conversations about how children are feeling.

Here are my recommendations for reassuring and conversation-starting books to help children cope with change:

No Matter What

No Matter What (by Debi Gliori) is a beautiful book about unconditional love. It resonates with a simple message that no matter what happens (or whatever he does), Large will always love Small. It’s a beautiful snuggly bedtime book to reassure an anxious little one. A real classic.

The Invisible String

The Invisible String (by Patricia Karst) is a great book for any change that involves separation from a parent or loved one. It describes the invisible string that binds people together even when they aren’t there. It’s very warm and reassuring and the strong visual image of a string gives young children a concrete way to help them understand love and attachment.

The Koala Who Could

The Koala Who Could (by Rachel Bright) is a new book from the creators of The Lion Inside. So it’s a bit more modern than many of the classics on this list. It’s about a Koala who likes everything to stay exactly the same and doesn’t like any change. In the course of the story, Koala discovers that change is not so bad and can lead to new and wonderful experiences. The rhymes are a real treat, bringing a light touch to a serious topic. Perfect for helping worried children feel brave about change.

The Complete Book of First Experiences

What I like about this book is that it collects together lots of separate stories about first experiences. Even if you aren’t currently facing that new experience, if you read the stories one by one, it gives a great sense that new things happening is ok. That the first time we do things, it’s natural to feel nervous – but that’s ok. All the stories in the Complete Book of First Experiences (Usborne Books) are also available separately (e.g. Going on a Plane and Moving House) so do check out the series.

Mummy Goes to Work

Mummy Goes to Work (by Kes Gray) is not so much a story book as a collection of reassuring statements. A sweet and simple book, ideal for toddlers. And for mums. A simple message that might be useful for preparing toddlers for mum going back to work. (See Storybooks for children about working mums for more options.)

Those are my recommendations for general books to help children cope with change. For books on other change-related topics, you might also find these booklists useful:

This is not a sponsored post, these are my own recommendations. However, this post does contain affiliate links – which means that if you click through and purchase, I will receive a small fee. See Disclosure Notice for more details.

Books to help children cope with change - image of 'No Matter What' book cover

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!)

4 responses to “Books to help children cope with change”

  1. I found this information very helpful.
    This is such an insightful article, as we all know that Kids’ books are a fascinating blend of life lessons and simplicity.

    Thanks for sharing your tips
    Cheers
    Lynda

  2. We all know that books are very important to our children. The more they read, the more things they will know. The more they learn, the more places they go.
    Thanks for sharing your article.

    Cheers
    Attilio

  3. kevin ratcliffe says:

    Thanks for the list. I will use the Koala story as part of a PSHE lesson following the PSHE Foundation Scheme of Work for Year 2 (Summer Term).

Leave a Reply

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

Related Articles

photo of parent relaxing in article by parenting expert Anita Cleare

Parents, cut yourselves some slack this summer

My intention was to write a blog post full of exciting things to do this summer that would help your children catch up lost ground after a year of lockdowns and remote learning. But, to be honest, I...

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,...

Photo of baby to illustrate podcast on introducing a new baby to your family by parenting expert Anita Cleare

Introducing a new baby to your family

I am frequently asked for advice on the best tactics for introducing a new baby. Many parents worry about how they will cope with the added demands of a new baby and how a sibling’s arrival...

photo of children playing to illustrate article on supporting your child's development by parenting expert Anita Cleare

101 ideas for supporting your child’s development

We all want our children to do well – at school and in life – and to reach their full potential. But battling over homework and bribing them to complete extra maths booklets isn’t...