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Books To Help Young Children Deal With Grief

For help locating one of these books please contact your school librarian.

The Two of Them by Aliki

The day she was born, her grandfather made her a ring of silk and a polished stone, because he loved her already

That Summer by Tony Johnston

The summer began like always-but everything changed when we knew that Joey was dying

Better with Two by Barbara M. Joosse

Every morning, while Laura rides her bike, Mrs. Brady and Max take a walk. They walk slowly, because Max is very old.

The Fall of Freddie the Leaf by Leo Buscaglia

How Freddie and his companion leaves change with the passing seasons, finally falling to the ground with winter’s snow

The Dead Bird by Margaret Wise Brown & Remy Charlip

And every day, until they forgot, they went and sang to their little dead bird and put fresh flowers on his grave

What’s Heaven? By Maria Shriver

Death eventually touches every family, and this treasure of a book-for people of all faiths-is a starting point for parents who must talk about this difficult topic with their children.

I’ll Always Love You by Hans Wilhelm

Portrays the close relationship between a boy and his dog.

The Purple Balloon by Christopher Raschka

When a child becomes aware of his or her pending death and is given the opportunity to “draw your feelings,” he or she will often draw a blue or purple balloon, released and floating free.

Everybody feels…Sad by Jane Bingham

Have you ever broken a favorite toy? Have you ever been teased or called nasty names?

Nana Upstairs & Nana Downstairs by Tonnie de Paola

“Won’t she ever come back?” he asked. “No, dear, except in your memory.”

The Memory String by Eve Bunting

Each button on Laura’s memory string represents a piece of her family’s history.

The Tiny Seed by Eric Carle

A fascinating story of the life cycle of a flower in terms of the adventures of a tiny seed.

When Dinosaurs Die by Laurie Krasny Brown and Marc Brown

No one can really understand death, but to children, the passing away of a loved one can be especially perplexing and troublesome.

Where is Grandpa? By T.A. Barron

I thought about Grandpa in all of those places. And I almost smiled, too.

Liplap’s Wish By Jonathan London & Sylvia Long

A story about love, loss, and remembrance. Perfect for one-on-one sharing as well as group discussion.

Annie and the Old One by Miska Miles

This book is a wise story of a Navajo girl and of her grandmother. The book presents the concept of death to children.