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The GrandNanny team

This week is children’s mental health week. Here are our top ten children’s books about mental health to help you and your child(ren) discuss mental health. 

  1. Hector’s Favourite Place by Jo Rooks 

Hector the hedgehog loves his home. It’s warm, cosy and safe. Plus it has all his favourite things inside it! But not leaving his home means he misses his friends. So, he starts taking small, brave steps outside. 

This is a story about overcoming anxiety by taking things slowly and building up courage. Ideal for ages 4-8. 

2. Tomorrow I’ll be brave by Jessica Hische 

Readers will journey through a beautiful selection of wise, inspiring and motivating messages. 

A rhyming picture book that teaches children how to be their best self (through learning) and encourages positive thinking and self-belief. Ideal for ages 3-7 

3. My Monster & Me by Nadiya Hussain & Ella Bailey 

A little boy is followed around by a huge worry monster. This worry monster is there when he gets dressed, plays with toys and meets friends. Can he learn to escape the worry monster?

Shows children that by talking about and sharing worries, problems are more manageable. Ideal for ages 3-5

4. When Things Get Too Loud by Anne Alcott 

Noises, smells, and sounds can make Bo feel very overwhelmed. One day, Bo’s Feel-O-Metre is off the charts and he wants to hide. But, then he makes a remarkable little friend.

This book is a story about sensory overload and helps children understand how it feels and what can help. Ideal for ages 4-9

5. The Girl Who Thought in Pictures by Dr. Temple Grandin 

Temple was never expected to speak, let alone become one of the most powerful voices in science. But, her unique mind made her capable of connecting animals in a special way.

A story about a girl with autism who thinks visually, it shows what her unique mind can do. Ideal for ages 5-8

6. Simon Sock by Sue Hendra and Paul Linnet 

Simon is an odd, stripey sock. All the other socks he lives with in the drawer have partners. Everyday two socks are picked for an adventure. Will Simon ever be picked? Will he one day find a partner?

Ideal for very young children, this story talks about being different and the importance of friendship. Ideal for ages 3-5 

7. The River by Tom Percival 

Rowan loves the river. It’s just like him. Some days it’s quiet and calm, on others it’s playful, and then there are days where it’s loud, wild and angry. But then, when Rowan has a particularly difficult time the river freezes. Can he release his feelings and let the river flow freely again?

A book that explores the power of feelings and how our emotions change. Ideal for ages 3-6

8. Ravi’s Roar by Tom Percival 

When Ravi is angry he becomes a tiger. Being a tiger is fun at first – they can do anything they want! But who wants to play with a growling, roaring wild tiger who won’t share or play nicely? Along the way, Ravi learns how important it is to express your feelings and make amends.

A wonderful picture book, which teaches children how to understand and deal with difficult emotions. Ideal for ages 3-6

9. My Magic Breath by Nick Ortner 

You can feel better just by breathing! In a world that is sometimes too busy, with too many things going on, My Magic Breath will teach children how to make negative feelings go away. The Magic Breath also teaches children mindfulness, self-awareness, and balance.

Teaches children the power of deep breathing, and how it can make you feel better. Ideal for ages 4-8

10. It’s Okay to Not Be Okay: Adults get Big Feelings too by Danielle ShermanLazar 

Our kids can then see how we deal with our emotions/mental health struggles and learn from us, so they know how to cope with emotions in a healthy way.

This book was written during the pandemic and teaches both parents and children that showing your emotions is okay (and good).Ideal for ages 5-8

 

The theme for this year’s Children’s Mental Health Week is ‘Let’s Connect’. Reading a book with your child(ren) or the little ones you’re looking after, is a great way to connect emotionally. Plus, reading can open discussions and create space for you and your young ones to talk.