Teach Your Kiddos How To Handle Grief With These Three Amazing Books

For this week’s Three to Read, we’re recommending some important children’s books that address the loss of a loved one and how to cope with it.

Recommendations Three To Read Young Readers
The ABCs of Grief by Jessica Correnti, Always There by Krystaelynne Sanders Diggs, and I Can't Believe They're Gone by Karen Brough surrounded by a floral nature scene.

The loss of a loved one is a tough thing to deal with, especially if you were close to the person who passed. Speaking from personal experience, losing someone is a feeling that I sometimes believe is indescribable. Whether you lose someone unexpectedly or know the day will be coming, having the right support and resources to deal with that loss is essential in maintaining your mental health, and it’s even more so important if you have a child facing loss. The following books aim to help parents teach their children how to cope with loss and grief.

HOT PICK

The ABCs of Grief by Jessica Correnti, illustrated by Rachel Nieman

The ABCs of Grief cover by Jessica Correnti, an intersection of roads with children walking and playing.
IMAGE VIA AMAZON

SUMMARY:

In The ABCs of Grief, Jessica Correnti addresses many different kinds of grief regarding topics such as moving, illness, and death. Using the alphabet and colorful illustrations that keep young readers interested, she covers different aspects of the grieving process that a young child may be experiencing. Not only is the book easy for children to grasp but the simple sentences also help parents explain grief and process grief themselves.

WHY:

For any family facing the loss of someone or something, this book utilizes knowledge that most children have — the alphabet — in order to teach and guide them through the grieving process. Rather than tell a story, Correnti uses each letter of the alphabet to focus on different topics, experiences, and feelings surrounding grief, making it easy for parents and kids to read in stages if they are feeling overwhelmed. Once reading, children will have an abundance of words that they can use to describe how they’re feeling to their loved ones.

COFFEE SHOP

Always There by Krystaelynne Sanders Diggs and Nikki Woods Jones, illustrated by Valeria Kornus

Always There cover by Krystaelynne Sanders Diggs and Nikki Woods Jones, a little girl wearing pajamas hugging a spirit.
IMAGE VIA BOOKSHOP

SUMMARY:

This book follows the story of a young girl who loses someone she loves very much. Throughout her grief journey, she learns of ways to deal with her loss. Diggs and Jones use bright, engaging illustrations and some rhyming, making it easy to follow for little ones. They help young readers face their grief by discussing the impact it can have as well as coping mechanisms that can be helpful for someone suffering from a loss. The book also focuses on strong communication between parents and children so kids are more comfortable expressing their feelings, helping them navigate their loss. The book also offers a resource section to assist parents throughout the progression of grief and when to seek help.

WHY:

Always There is a great option to help educate about grief as it focuses on the importance of communicating and encourages children to share their thoughts and feelings in order to handle their grief, rather than bottling it up. It’s a quick and simple read but has a deep message beneath its bright colors and catchy sentences. It’s a book that would be useful for personal reasons and would also work wonderfully in a classroom or school library.

DARK HORSE

I Can’t Believe They’re Gone by Karen Brough, illustrated by Hiruni Kariyawasam

I Can't Believe They're Gone by Karen Brough cover, a bear and a mouse wearing clothing embrace in a field.
IMAGE VIA BOOKSHOP

SUMMARY:

At first glance, someone might wonder how a bear and a mouse can assist in educating young readers about grief, but once you meet Tiny and Bear, you’ll realize the importance of having a support system in times of need. After the mouse family suffers a very sad loss, Bear swoops in to help Tiny the mouse deal with his loss. How does he help Tiny? By covering numerous topics, such as the many feelings they’re experiencing and meaningful ways to honor their loved one, Bear teaches Tiny how to cope with loss and grief. Having a support system allows Tiny to grieve his loved one in a healthy way.

WHY:

With cute and cuddly characters like Bear and Tiny, I Can’t Believe They’re Gone keeps the lessons about grief age-appropriate and familiar for young readers. Rather than discussing the death and loss of loved ones, these animals allow parents to ease into the conversation in a much less scary or anxiety-inducing way. This book shares with readers that feelings aren’t good or bad, they just are and it is something that has to be dealt with.

Thanks for checking out this week’s Three to Read! We hope you enjoyed this week’s choices. Check back next week for more recommendations!


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