For kids that have trouble with anxiety, nervousness in crowds, or are quick to react emotionally, there is nothing better than a good book for them to gain perspective. Here are some that I have read to my kids that have struck a chord and opened up discussion. They teach coping skills to help kids bounce back from their problems on their own, so that they will be more resilient in the future.
- Molly Lou Melon by Patty Lovell. Both Molly Lou Melon books that Patty Lovell has published are amazing. They are all about being yourself in the face of adversary and using your imagination and creativity to amuse yourself. So many kids nowadays have forgotten about daydreaming and I think social media has left kid’s self-confidence shaky earlier on in their lives. These simple life skills are so important! A bully calls attention to your buck teeth? Stack coins on them as a trick! A bully makes fun of how you sing? Sing louder!! Bored? Create something out of scraps or use your imagination to construct it. I love these books and would read them 110% of the time if I could. Plus, the illustrations are impossibly cute.
2. Rosie Revere, Engineer, By Andrea Beaty. This book is filled with feminist girl power galore, but it also resonated with my son. After Rosie creates a wonderful machine that her uncle laughs at, she quits inventing. One fateful day, a favourite great aunt visits her and Rosie wants to do something special for her. Will her invention fall flat again? Rosie wants to do everything perfect and is worried that her inventions won’t work the first time around. When she learns to keep trying and follow your heart, your kids will learn right along with her. With rhymes, great illustration and smart writing, this is a book that teaches without being condescending. I will definitely be buying this book.
3. When My Worries Get too Big, by Karl Dunn Buron. This is less of a story and more of a workbook. Recommended by a teacher, my daughter really enjoyed this one and refers to it whenever she can. We borrowed it from the library and will again. It speaks of the 3 levels of problems and the 3 levels of reactions in easy to understand stoplight colors; green, yellow and red. When our kids get upset they often describe their mood within these simple colour choices. Helpful for all of us, I really enjoyed this one. It gives them a description for their difficult emotions and it follows with coping strategies.
4. The Rainbabies, by Laura Krauss Melmed. The couple in this book loves the rainbabies so unconditionally that nothing will stop them from keeping the babies safe. About letting nothing stop you and believing in something, this book is a winner.
5. Zach Gets Frustrated, by William Mulcahy. I can’t say enough about this book. Zach wakes up on the wrong side of the bed and everything seems to be going wrong for him. A day out at the beach isn’t even fun for Zach when his kite won’t fly. His dad takes the time to talk to Zach and gives him a tool to remember how to deal with his difficult emotions. The “frustration triangle” in the book has been actualized on my kid’s walls with washi tape. Amazing book with realistic feelings and do-able strategy for kids as young as preschool age.
6. Oh, The Places You’ll Go!, By Dr Seuss. WOW. What an amazing reminder to kids and adults alike to not sweat the small stuff. I need to own 1,000 copies and give them to everyone I know from age 3-100.
So there you go! A list for you to teach kids to be resilient. Coping skills galore in these books, presented in a myriad of ways. If you have kids that are highly sensitive, people-pleasers or are emotional, these are perfect.
(All images taken from Amazon.ca, where you can buy all of these wonderful books as well! )