20 Best Kids Books to Teach Social-Emotional Skills

Children’s books are an excellent resource to teach your children social-emotional skills such as manners, identifying emotions, bravery, problem-solving, and dealing with disappointment. We have compiled a list of our favorites to share with you!

These books help kids to understand and navigate the difficult world of emotions and social communication skills.


1.The Way I Feel by Janan Cain

Using strong, colorful and espressive images along with simple verses TheWay I Feel helps children connect the word and the emotion.

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2.The Way I Act by Steve Metzger

The Way I Act explores thirteen ways of behaving. The friendly verses and bold illustrations convey many positive ideas of how to act in a variety of situations.

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3.Today I Feel Silly by Jamie Lee Curtis

Silly, cranky, excited, or sad—everyone has moods that can change each day. And that’s okay! Follow the boisterous, bouncing protagonist as she explores her moods and how they change from day to day.

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Point of View

4.A Tale of Two Beasts by Fiona Roberton

A little girl rescues a strange beast in the woods and carries him safely home.  But the beast is not happy and escapes! A funny and charming tale about seeing both sides of the story.

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5.I Will Surprise My Friend! by Mo Willems

In I Will Surprise My Friend!, Gerald and Piggie want to play a game and surprise each other-but the biggest surprise is the one they least expect.

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6.The True Story of the Three Little Pigs by Jon Scieszka

In this hysterical and clever fracture fairy tale picture book that twists point of view and perspective, young readers will finally hear the other side of the story of “The Three Little Pigs.”

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Bravery and Healthy Risk-Taking

7.Jonathan James and the What if Monster by Michelle Nelson-Schmidt

Whenever Jonathan James finds himself in a new situation, he hears his Whatif Monster asking all kind of questions to stop him trying something new: What if it’s scary? What if they laugh? Finally, Jonathan James has some questions of his own: What if they don’t? What then?

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