10 Picture Books About Big Life Lessons

Check out these books with your children to help them navigate life&s big moments.

By Allison McDonald
Nov 26, 2015



Parents reading a book with their daughter

Nov 26, 2015

Big life lessons can be challenging, wonderful, or even traumatic.

As parents we want to give our children tools to navigate these experiences and that is a tough thing to do. How do we help them navigate experiences that may not may not happen or may even scare them to just talk about?

My best answer is books. Books are fantastic tools to help parents and children navigate big life lessons in the arms of their parents with a chance to ask questions and ease worries along the way.

Here are ten books about big life lessons for parents to check out with their kids:

1. The Berenstain Bears' Moving Day by Stan and Jan Berenstain

Moving is hard, but it can also be completely amazing! This book is an old favorite. Don’t think that because it has recognizable characters that the message and less than awesome. This little book covers so much about a complex topic.

2. You Are the Best Medicine by Julie Clark and illustrated by Jana Christy

Cancer is not a lesson any of us want to have to teach our children about but it is something we likely will. This book talks about breast cancer but is more about cancer in general. I hope you never need this book but am glad it’s available if you do.

3. Rudi's Pond by Eve Bunting, illustrated by Ronald Himler

Everyone will have to talk to their children about losing a loved one at some point. It’s just a part of life. This book is the book for you.

4. The Kissing Hand by Audrey Penn

 Going to school for the first time is awesome, and scary. This book is a classic for dealing with separation anxiety.

5. The Empty Pot by Demi

 Imagination is a great thing but learning to tell the truth is a life lesson that all children must learn and understand this book is a fantastic tool to help teach that lesson.

6. Pink Tiara Cookies for Three by Maria Dismondy

Friendship is not intuitive especially when there are three friends all fighting for attention. This book helps parents help their children learn to navigate friendships.

7. My Princess Boy by Cheryl Kilodavis, illustrated by Suzanne DeSimone

Your children will encounter all different kinds of children in their life, all different kinds of adults and maybe they themselves won’t easily fit into society’s mold. This book teaches children that all people should be accepted and celebrated.

8. Monsters Don't Eat Broccoli by Barbara Jean Hicks

At first this book looks like a book about eating veggies which is an important lesson, but not a big one. The big lesson is to try new things. That is a huge life lesson we all need!

9. Room for Rabbit by Roni Schotter, illustrated by Cyd Moore

No one starts a family thinking they are going to end up divorced, but it is a very common life lesson children are learning every day. You don’t have to worry about finding resources for this. This book is a wonderful book to help explain divorced and all the emotions that go with it to your child.

10. The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein

I am going to be honest. I do not like this book. It makes me incredibly angry but I think that was the author’s goal to evoke emotion. It reminds us all of what happens when we take things for granted.

What title has helped you teach big life lessons? Tell us about it on Scholastic Parents Facebook page!

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