If you’re like me, you’re searching for great ways to build your child’s emotional intelligence. Of course, we’re our children’s first role models but picture books can also be helpful as you intentionally build your kids’ EQ. The conversations that occur before, during, and after reading these books will be rich.
4 New Emotional Intelligence Picture Books
The Rabbit Listened by Cory Doerrfeld
One of the most important things we can do as parents is to LISTEN and not solve our kids’ problems. Easier said than done. I love this book because it’s about this important skill — listening and accepting, not solving. Taylor feels proud of her block structure but then is devastated when birds crash into it. One by one, animals try to help with their advice– but this doesn’t help. Chicken says Taylor needs to talk about it, bear suggests shouting, and elephant recommends remembering. Taylor doesn’t want to do any of it. Rabbit comes and sits near Taylor. Later, Taylor feels ready to talk, shout, remember, laugh, hide, throw, and ruin things. The rabbit listens to all Taylor’s feelings without commenting. (This is such a fabulous example of what we should do, too, just listen.) Then the rabbit also listens to Taylor when Taylor’s ready to build her block structure again. Isn’t this brilliant? The rabbit doesn’t try to solve Taylor’s problems. The rabbit accepts Taylor’s quiet and listens with compassion when Taylor’s ready to share. This may be my new favorite book for feelings and emotions because it’s SUCH a good example of being present for another person, whether your child or a friend.
Goodbye Brings Hello: A Book of Firsts by Dianne White, illustrated by Daniel Wiseman
Growing up brings growing pains — like those of moving on or saying goodbye. This book reminds us that often, the goodbyes bring something new into our lives, too. No more tricycle. Now you’re riding a bicycle. No more velcro shoes. You’ve learned how to tie lace-ups. Eye-catching brightly colored illustrations match the book’s message perfectly.
Oopsie-do! by Tim Kubart, illustrated by Lori Richmond
It’s okay to make mistakes — just say oopsie-do and move on. If you spill on the floor or if your snacks fall on the ground, what do you say? Oopsie-do. What a reassuring message for children! Listen to the song at hc.com/oopsie.
The Worry Box by Suzanne Chiew, illustrated by Sean Julian
When her friend, Murray Bear, worries about going to the waterfall, Molly shows him her worry box. She writes down what she’s worried about then puts it inside. “Worrying won’t stop me!” Because of this, Murray is able to enjoy the many adventures the day brings. Also, now he can help his new friend, Lily when she gets worried. “Sharing worries makes them feel smaller and not as scary.” I’m really picky about how books handle feelings. I appreciate that this story allows for feelings, including worry, and doesn’t try to stop them. This is a very healthy approach to feelings.
You Might Also Like:
Download my "Can't Put 'Em Down" book lists for your kids ages 3 - 13.
Also, I'll send you a bonus "23 Reasons to Read" printable poster!