Children’s Mental Health Week 2021

With the circumstances of the past year making many of us feel out of control and helpless supporting children and young people to express themselves feels more important than ever. Parents and carers play an important role in a child’s mental health, but there are simple things you can do to help your child express their feelings, including listening carefully and giving them your full attention when they are trying to express themselves and reassuring them it’s OK to have strong emotions sometimes.  

Once a child has lost confidence it can be a slow process building it back up. Books are a useful building block in this process, offering gentle reassurance, practical help and companionship.  

We have a number of books in our collection that can children stay safe, calm, connected and hopeful, by tackling life’s big challenges through the proven power of reading. Sharing a book, or for older children reading the same book and then discussing it, can give us an opportunity to have open and helpful conversations with children about a number of issues including mental health.  

For children and teenagers (all available as eBook and eAudiobook)  

Clownfish by Alan Durant 

Gentle, funny, moving and strange, this is a haunting story of life-after-loss. When Dak’s Dad dies suddenly Dak find’s relief from his mother’s grief by visiting the local aquarium, where he finds, to his amazement that his Dad is alive and well and living as a clownfish.  

Available as eBook, eAudiobook and physical book
Suitable for ages 10+

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time by Mark Haddon  

This unique mystery novel explores mental health and psychological disorders in an accessible and immediately relatable way, as 15 year old Christopher Boone – who has  Asperger’s Syndrome and has never gone further than the end of his own road – sets out to solve the mystery of a murdered dog and ends up turning his world upside down.

Available as eBook, eAudiobook and physical book
Suitable for ages 13+

Wonder by R J Palacio

Wonder is the emotional story of Auggie, a 10-year-old boy with a rare facial birth disfigurement. Auggie has had 27 operations, yet his first foray into school life, having been home educated to this point, isn’t so much about what he looks like and more about how people react to him.  

Available as eBook, eAudiobook and physical book
Suitable for ages 8+

Jemima Small Versus the Universe by Tamsin Winter  

Tamsin Winter, the author of Miss Nobody, conveys the complexities of school life, with a tale of body image, self-esteem and self-acceptance, that deals with difficult issues with sensitivity and well-judged humour. 

Available as eBook and physical book
Suitable for ages 10+

Turtle Boy by M. Evan Wolkenstein  

Twelve-year-old Will likes two things: turtles and the local nature reserve. Everything else is a nightmare, because Will has a facial difference that has earned him an unfortunate nickname. When Will’s meets RJ, a boy who is confined to a hospital room, he discovers they both have strength to lend the other and that life is too short to live in a shell. 

Available as eBook, eAudiobook and physical book
Suitable for ages 8+


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