The topic of friendship is always a fun one to explore via picture books, but it's also a topic much on my mind as my kids grow older. It's very important to me that my kiddos feel like they have friends, regardless of how many friends they have. But another thing that's really interesting is that I have noticed how much work friendships take (especially if you live far away from close friends) & that time & effort is also necessary in cultivating new adult friendships. Whatever your case may be, it's always nice to have a friend to rely on. That's what these 15 picture books all depict; the beauty & importance of friendship.
1. The Things I Love About Friends
by: Trace Moroney
(Part of a series that celebrates children's everyday experiences, & teaches the importance of learning to be a good friend.)
2. The Bear & the Moon
by: Matthew Burgess & Catia Chien
(The gift of a balloon floats into Bear's life & the story follows a tale of friendship & discovery, as well as forgiveness.)
3. Should I Share My Ice Cream?
by: Mo Willems
(Jerald the Elephant LOVES ice cream! He buys a cone one day, but he is deliberating over whether to eat it himself or share it with Piggie...before it melts.)
4. How Do Dinosaurs Play with Their Friends?
by: Jane Yolen & Mark Teague
(This clever book will give kids good & bad examples of how to share & take turns while playing with friends; an essential social behavior that has to be taught to kids who want to make friends.)
5. The Big Umbrella
by: Amy June Bates & Juniper Bates
(By the front door there is a big umbrella; & it's big enough for everyone encountered to come underneath it; it's metaphorically inclusive.)
6. You Are my Friend: The Story of Mister Rogers & His Neighborhood
by: Aimee Reid & Matt Phelan
(The story of little Freddie Rogers who later grew up to be the Mister Rogers we saw on TV.)
7. Peanut Butter & Cupcake
by: Terry Border
(What does a piece of bread do when it's feeling lonely? Find a friend...but Peanut Butter tries & tries to find someone to spend time with, but Hamburger & Egg are too busy for him.)
8. Have you Filled a Bucket Today?
by: Carol McCloud & David Messing
(Did you know that everyone around the world has a bucket, & that you can help your own bucket get filled by filling up the buckets of others? It might be writing a nice note to a teacher or a classmate, or telling Mom & Dad how much you love them.)
9. The Cool Bean
by: Jory John
(This story is about the bean who had cool friends & then suddenly felt left out & on the sidelines. Then the cool beans reach out to their old friend & show him how to include others & be friendlier & "cooler" too.)
*By the way, this is on an incredible sale for Black Friday at Target right now; it's part of the buy 2 get 1 free books & movies special!!
10. Strictly No Elephants
by: Lisa Mantchev & Taeeun Yoo
(One little boy is excited to attend a pet club for owners, but when he learns that his pet elephant won't be welcome there, he sets out to make a club for kids with unique pets, & makes some new friends along the way.)
11. Share Some Kindness, Bring Some Light
by: Apryl Stott
(Bear's sad because all of the other animals think he's mean. His human friend Coco is willing to help him, though. Coco shares this advice: "When life gets dark as winter's night, share some kindness, bring some light.")
12. Llama Llama Time to Share
by: Anna Dewedney
(Llama has a new friend over to play-- Nelly Gnu. The playdate is going swimmingly until Nelly decides to pick up his prized Fuzzy Llama and play with it; then Llama decides he really isn't in the mood to share. How will Llama & Mama work things out this time?)
13. The Friend Ship
by: Kat Yeh
14. How to Spot a Best Friend
by: Bea Birdsong
(This little girl heads to her first day of school, determined to find the kids who are willing to not only let you borrow a crayon, but a super sharp crayon. Her mother is a little doubtful, but she's determined to try things her way.)
*By the way, this is on an incredible sale for Black Friday at Target right now; it's part of the buy 2 get 1 free books special!!
15. Lola Dutch, I Love You So Much!
by: Kenneth Wright
(Lola loves showing her friends how much she loves them! She does nice things for Crane & Gator, but she's forgotten about Bear-- how can she show Bear how much he means to her?)
by: Michael Slack
(A bonus read that tells the sweet story of a serviceable bunny when his friends all lose items of value. They find a mysterious seed, which happens to be for a giant carrot, which instead of gobbling up, LaRue goes to work building things for his friends instead.)
Hi, I'm Katie! I'm 33 years old, love the outdoors, reading books & being a mama! And I also enjoy literacy research for my podcast.