Books for pre-school age children

'A place in my heart' by Annette Aubrey

Andrew’s grandad has died, and Andrew is feeling very sad and confused. Explore with a child the difficult issue of bereavement as Andrew talks about his feelings with his mum and dad. From the 'Understanding…' series, these illustrated storybooks allow small children to get to grips with upsetting and bewildering situations that might be affecting them or people around them.

'I miss you: a first look at death' by Pat Thomas

This reassuring picture book explores the difficult issue of death for young children. Children's feelings and questions about this sensitive subject are looked at in a simple but realistic way. This book helps them to understand their loss and come to terms with it.

'Is Daddy coming back in a minute?: explaining sudden death to pre-school children in words they can understand” by Elke and Alex Barber

This book explains (sudden) death to very young children in a way they can understand for their age and stage of development. Written in 3-year-old Alex’s words, the book tells the story of how Alex’s mum helps him understand what happened. It shows other children that they are not alone, and gives carers the confidence and words to help explain death.

'What happened to Daddy's body?: explaining what happens after death in words very young children can understand by Elke and Alex Barber

This book follows on from the story in 'Is Daddy coming back in a minute?’ Alex's dad has died and he now has lots more questions. In simple, direct language, Elke explains what happens after a death in words that very young children can understand. We follow Alex as he learns about cremation, burial and spreading ashes.

'Supporting children’s experiences of loss and separation' by the Pre-school Learning Alliance

For use by early years practitioners. Provides a perspective on different types of loss that children experience, with discussions and suggestions that will support early years practitioners in dealing with children and families sensitively and safely. The use of thought-provoking case studies gives an insight into what the child might be thinking and feeling, and what support they need from the adult carer.

'Who will do my hair?' by Rachel Smith

Written from the perspective of 6-year-old Polly. For young children to help them understand and prepare for the death of a parent or significant adult. It’s recommended that an adult reads this book with the child to open up and explore feelings, concerns and worries that the child might have. 

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