Books About Death for Children

And some to help adults cope, too. Here are nine reads worth purchasing for your family if you're coping with a loss of a loved one.

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At some point, a child is going to deal with a loss – whether it’s a grandparent or a friend. Attending that person’s funeral is important for children.

To help kids cope with the loss even more, funeral home directors and grief counselors say that books are an excellent resource. Written material ranges from parent guides to books written specifically for children.

Here are nine books written for a young audience:

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Aarvy Aardvark Finds Hope: A Read-Aloud Story for People of All Ages by Donna R. O’Toole

The story of Aarvy, an aardvark who lost his family, but thanks to a great friend, he’s able to get over his feelings of despair.

Lifetimes: The Beautiful Way to Explain Death to Children by Bryan Mellonie and Robert Ingpen

This book helps explain death in a very sensitive way. It talks about plants, animals and people – and is a great resource for parents to use when talking about death with their kids.

The Invisible String by Patrice Karst

This read helps children deal with separation anxiety and the feelings of loneliness that death can cause. They’ll read about the invisible string that “reaches from heart to heart.”

The Fall of Freddie the Leaf: A Story for All Ages by Leo Buscaglia

Leaves change with the seasons and the author uses leaves as a way to explain life and death to children. It’s a simple story that’s sure to help those dealing with death.

Sad Isn’t Bad: When Someone You Love Dies by Michaelene Mundy

Cry, ask for help and more – these are things this book teaches children to do when they’re coping with loss.

I Miss You: A First Look at Death by Pat Thomas

If kids are having trouble expressing their emotions after the death of a loved one, this book is a great tool to help cope.

Creative Interventions for Bereaved Children by Liana Lowenstein

A wonderful tool for grief counselors working with young children. It has activities for working with children who experienced a loss.

Why Did You Die?: Activities to Help Children Cope with Grief and Loss by Erika Leeuwenburgh and Ellen Goldring

This book helps to describe how children are feeling when they experience loss and is a tool for parents – helping them understand their child’s grief process. There are 40 activities to help children, too.

Get Rid of the Hurt by Madeleine Brehm and Rachel Wenzlaff

Helps children in grades 1-5 understand grieving and why it’s important.

This post was originally published in 2015 and has been updated for 2016.

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