Sunday, April 8, 2012

Children's Books on Different Kinds of Families

I was recently asked if I knew of any good children's books to help someone who is a single mom explain to her five year old son that his family is normal... That was a good question! There are so many different kinds of families and many adults don't know how to explain this to their children. Many children live in what the world thinks of as a "normal" family with a mom and a dad but more and more this is not the case, that doesn't mean that other families are not normal just that they are different but still normal.

Surprisingly there are few books written about families that are not the mom, dad and child scenario family. Most of the family books that are available have that scenario and don't seem to have room for any other family organizations, that leaves some adults and children wondering where to turn for the same literary comfort that is abundantly out there for the mom, dad and child scenario family. I was really astonished at the lack of books for young children on this subject, we have had several generations now of single parents dealing with all the issues that have to be dealt with. Oh there are lots of books for adults but the children are somehow left out of the mix.

The following books are among the few I found that might be helpful, but the list is short for a reason, there just aren't many books out there on the subject, especially for single parents.

• The Family Book by Todd Parr
• We Belong Together: A Book About Adoption and Families by Todd Parr
• Who's in a Family? By Robert Skutch
• All Families Are Special by Norma Simon
• Do I Have a Daddy? A Story About a Single-Parent Child by Jeanne Warren Lindsay

I promised the person who asked me about a book for her friend that I would write a book for young children who were in the single parent situation like her friend's little boy, (I do have a bit of experience on the subject). Even though I usually write fantasy adventure or science fiction for middle grade or young adults I will give this my best efforts soon. It is a difficult subject for us adults to broach and trying to explain it so that children can understand is not easy... then again maybe it's easier for them to understand than it is for us grownups, we seem to complicate things way more than they need to be.

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