Introducing a new child into the family can be a stressful time, especially for the older siblings. Sometimes the older children are still very young and don’t understand the idea of having a baby in the house. Other times, the siblings will be a bit older and will be upset by no longer being the baby of the family.
Talking to your older children can be very helpful in helping them to understand what will happen once the baby arrives home, but sometimes you need a little help. The following six books are great for young children to help them understand what it means to have a new sibling in the house.
Waiting for Baby
– Annie Kubler
Waiting for Baby is a story without words that follows the upcoming birth of a new baby sister or brother. It shows events such as the ultrasound, buying new toys, to decorating the playroom and visiting mum at the hospital. Parents can put their own words to the pictures in a way that their own child will understand. Older children can be encouraged to make up their own stories as well.
There’s A House Inside My Mummy
– Giles Andreae
A story of a little boy waiting for his little brother or sister to arrive. The story talks of mum’s cravings, her tiredness & the fact that her tummy is getting bigger. It has rhyming text and is a great introduction for older siblings, to how pregnancy will affect their mum.
A Baby Sister for Frances
– Russell Hoban
After her baby sister is born, Gloria decideds her house isn’t much fun anymore. After dinner one night she packs her bags and runs away… under the dining room table. Soon she overhears her parents talking about how much they miss her, so she decides that she should go back home to do all of the things big sisters have to do. A very sweet story about sibling rivalry.
There’s Going to Be A Baby
– John Burningham
As the arrival of a new sibling draws nearer, the questions that stream through a young child’s mind are followed in this book. When is the baby coming? What will we call it? What will the baby do? We don’t really need the baby, do we? The book reassures the older as the child in the story imagines all kinds of futures for the brother or sister he is waiting to meet.
Happy Birth Day
– Robie H Harris
Happy Birth Day is a picture book in which the mother tells her daughter about her first 24 hours of life after she is born. The picture on the first page shows a baby, still with her umbilical cord. The cord is cut and a nurse puts a hat on baby’s head. Mother breastfeeds her, and relatives come to visit and take photos of her. This is a lovely book to show the older sibling what might happen the first day their brother or sister arrives into the world.
I Used to be The Baby
– Robin Ballard
This story follows the day of two brothers. The older brother spends the day recognizing problems for his new younger sibling and then trying to solve them. Some are because the baby is small – “He doesn’t like riding in the car. I will sing him a song.” The older sibling causes some of the problems – “Sand can hurt your eyes,” and the illustration shows the boy throwing sand, right onto the baby’s head.