One of the easiest ways to update your counseling program is to add new material to your library. These books for elementary school counselors will make your students laugh, relate, and learn from the empathetic characters within.
The books in this article will enhance your counseling program and help your students cope with social and emotional situations that may feel overwhelming to them.
We all know that school counselors provide invaluable support to students through lessons, counseling, and other professionally learned skills.
But sometimes a funny protagonist, within the pages of a book, is more relatable than a lesson. Moreover, these literary gems can often make our jobs easier.
And that’s why I’ve compiled this list of must-have storybooks for elementary school counselors. And it’s my hope that you’ll find something to add to your counseling toolkit and give your students something new to relate to.
I’ve chosen the following books for my counseling program because they focus on the following aspects
- Topics that Highlight Feelings and Emotions
- Empathy for Other
- Characters Children Relate to Easily
- Morals and Ethics
- Lessons Learned from a Character Journey
As you can see, these topics are extremely important in a school counselor’s library.
So, Ready for the list?
Let’s start with the oldies and end with some newbies to freshen up your library!
Tried-and-True Storybooks for Counselors
You may already have these in your office, but if not, they are on my list of recommendations for you.
Enemy Pie by Derek Munson: Teaches students about kindness and friendship.
The Juice Box Bully By Bob Sornson: Teaches students how to respond to bullying in a positive way by standing up for others.
Beautiful Oops By Barney Saltzberg: Shows students that it’s ok to make a mistake by teaching them how to see the bright side of any oops.
Julia Cook Books for Elementary School Counselors
I love Julia Cook’s approach to storybook writing for children. She knows how to make students laugh and teaches valuable problem-solving skills. Honestly, I’d recommend ALL of her books. But, here are some of my favorites (these are staples in my counseling library):
My Mouth is a Volcano: Empathetically, and humorously, teaches children to wait their turn…and not interrupt others. A book about respect and listening skills.
That Rule Doesn’t Apply to Me: Another relatable, giggle-inducing, book from Julia Cook that takes the student through a journey of understanding. Students learn that rules are, in fact, important.
Lying up a Storm: This book teaches students the consequences of lying and how it relates to the health of their friendships.
Newer Book Releases to Refresh Your Library
Zen Hen By Keri Powers-Pye: A fantastic book featuring a hen in search of peace in the midst of the chaos created by her peers. Zen hen teaches students about mindfulness.
Anxious Ninja By Mary Nhin: This new one has great potential to become a classic. I love how it normalizes anxiety for kids and shows them how to cope.
Marie’s Big Adieu By Tamara Rittershaus: I chose this one because it deals with accepting change. Change is really hard for kids. The positive message gives hope for new, beautiful beginnings.
Me and My Feelings By Vanessa Green Allen, M.Ed.: A social-emotional learning book that helps students acknowledge their feelings and become comfortable with addressing them in order to remain calm and at peace.
Even Superheroes Have Bad Days By Shelly Becker: Assists students with emotional overload by demonstrating that even their heroes can have bad days…no one is perfect.
Learn, Grow, Succeed: A Growth Mindset Journal for Kids By ME, lol. I almost didn’t list my own book, but I guess I am a little biased. This one is more of a journal that kids can use at home, but it is very empowering in my humble opinion. It focuses on growth mindset, mindfulness, self-esteem and gratitude. Kids take control of their own destiny, one day at a time.
A Little Spot of Anger By Diane Alber. I love all of Diane’s Little Spot books. This one is very useful for teaching littles how to calm down when they get angry.
The No More Bullying Book by Vanessa Green Allen, M.Ed. I love this one because it gives students real tools they can use right away for dealing with bullies.
Each of these books are relatable, educational, and most importantly, entertaining for our students.
Think of them as the new classics that can help aid our efforts in developing students with social-emotional strengths. Hopefully, those strengths will show up in the classroom and in their personal lives.
I hope my list has provided some new additions to your toolbox and gotten your wheels turning. What are some of your favorite books in your library?