Using Books to Help Children Identify Emotions

As a school psychologist and mom to three young children, I believe it is important to teach children to identify, express, and manage emotions in a healthy way. Social-emotional skills are important life skills, skills that help us to navigate our world, connect with others, and build life-long relationships.

But, in order to express and manage those emotions, you must first be able to identify those emotions both in yourself and in others. It is helpful to talk about emotions often with young children. This can be done through conversation, watching and discussing movies, playing games, having emotional check-ins, and reading fantastic books.

Using Books to Help Children Identify Emotions

Today, I am sharing two picture books that are perfect for identifying and discussing emotions.

Using Books to Help Children Identify Emotions | Caitlin Fitzpatrick Curley, GeekMom
Image source: Caitlin Fitzpatrick Curley

Making Faces: A First Book of Emotions by Abrahams Appleseed

This sweet board book is perfect for the very youngest book lover in your life. In this chunky, colorful book, babies will enjoy exploring the emotions of other people. The book features the six essential facial expressions: happy, sad, angry, surprised, silly, and sleepy. This book is a wonderful learning tool. Young children will learn two developmental skills: recognizing emotions and pointing as a means of communication. I love that the book also includes a mirror so that children can mimic the expressions depicted in the text.

Today I Feel: An Alphabet of Feelings by Madalena Moniz

This beautifully illustrated alphabet book features a range of feelings, from Adored to Zzzz. Featuring beautiful watercolor paintings, this journey through the emotional alphabet will spark big, important conversations.

Do you love using books in your family routine or homeschool?

I do, too! Feel free to join my free 5-Day “Coffee and Books” series and learn how to start your day on the right track!

Using Books to Help Children Identify Emotions | Caitlin Fitzpatrick Curley, GeekMom
Image source: Caitlin Fitzpatrick Curley

Cait is a school psychologist, mom to three amazing children, and an unexpected homeschooler. She loves nature, good books, board games, strong coffee, and dancing in her kitchen. You can read about all of these things and more at My Little Poppies. Cait co-hosts The Homeschool Sisters Podcast. She is a contributing writer for Simple Homeschool and her work has also appeared on The Huffington Post, The Mighty, and Scary Mommy. You can find her on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram and G+.