Sunday, December 4, 2022

7 Days of Books, Day 4 Social Emotional Learning

Welcome Back! The celebration continues today with books that touch on social-emotional learning. 

Given how feelings and experiences can be new and unique for every child navigating our world while growing up, these types of books are invaluable in helping kids understand or cope with different situations. 

Roger Williams Park Zoo, Rhode Island

I hope there is something for everyone on this list of books as we move through a holiday season. Soon we'll be jumping into a new year, which almost seems hard to believe.  But believe, we must. If you're not ready to look that far ahead, then simply believe in this: there are 5 giveaways with this post! Be sure to follow the guidelines for nabbing your entries. Good luck! 

Also, if you missed any of the previous days in this book event, those raffles are still open. Be sure to visit those blog posts and rafflecopters, as well.

From Boys and Girls Club of America "Teaching Kids Kindness through the Holidays and Beyond"

Becoming Blue 
by Ellen Tarlow, illustrated by Julien Chung (Beach Lane Books 2022). 

This very important story is not only about discovering how to be true to oneself, but also about discovering how to celebrate friendship with others and ultimately celebrate the harmony that can be discovered in doing new things together. This new favorite is for all readers.

Brave Like Mom 
by Monica Acker, illustrated by Paran Kim (Beaming Books 2022). 

In this touching story a young girl learns that she is strong, brave, and fierce, just like her mom who is battling a serious illness. What I most love about this book is that young readers will hear that being strong doesn't mean you can't cry, being brave doesn't mean you can't be scared, and being fierce involves pushing through hard times toward hope of good stuff to come. A wonderful book on so many levels for is a perfect fit for all readers. 

Lulu and Zoey. A Sister Story 
by Carrie Finison, illustrated by Brittany Jackson (Running Press Kids). 

This adorable and heart-warming book explores the relationship between an older and younger sister, who sometimes get along and sometimes don't. Told in rhyme that flows perfectly toward an ending with a twist that will please everyone, I predict this book will be well-read with repeated readings. It's sure to be a favorite with any sister.

A Costume for Charly 
by C. K. Malone, illustrated by Alejandra Barajas (Beaming Books 2022).  

When a nonbinary child decides to find the perfect costume that speaks to both their male and female sides, persistence and creativity win out in finding a way to dress for the holiday that feels 100% Charly. This meaningful story with a positive message about embracing identity is an important story for building empathy and understanding in young readers at any time of year.

Little Medusa's Hair Do-Lemma
 by Jennifer Buchet, illustrated by Cassie Chancy (Clear Fork Publishing 2021). 

This adorable and unique picture book finds its heart in a familiar and beloved theme of fitting in. Based on Greek mythology, Little Medusa who is growing into a head topped off with snakes, grows increasing disconcerted about having traditional gorgon hair until she finds a style that works for both worlds - that with her non-gorgon school friends and that with her family. Perfect for providing an example of creative problem-solving.

How to Draw a Happy Cat
 by Ethan T. Berlin, illustrated by Jimbo Matison (Hippo Park, Astra Publishing 2022). 

Mix a bit of simple instruction on how to draw with prompts on how to keep a cat happy, along with ideas for adventure, . . . and you've got a hit! Sure to boost confidence in drawing and stir discussions of emotions, this book offers a unique combination in engaging a child's interest on multiple levels. 

Quacks Like a Duck by Stephanie Campisi, illustrated by Maria Lebedeva (Familius 2022). 

In this story about fitting in and welcoming others who are new and different, a platypus arrives at a costume party, but dressed as herself. The sleuthing begins to make sense of what appears to be an animal outside the norm until the quirks of all in attendance are celebrated. The hint into evolutionary biology makes this science teacher's heart sing.

Share Some Kindness, Bring Some Light by Apryl Stott (Paula Wiseman Books 2020). 

I absolutely love the message of this book on how our own actions can make the world around us more wonderful and accepting. The warmth that emanates from each illustration is captivating and perfectly matches the words that flow from the page.

I'm a Feel O'Saur
by Lezlie Evans, illustrated by Kate Chappell (Welbeck Childrens 2021). 

What do you get when you combine dinosaurs with feelings experienced by every child? A winner! Especially when the the book is told in an upbeat kid-friendly rhyme. This reassuring book will connect with any young reader.

Brilliantly Dyslexic
 by Liz Trudeau (2022). 

This book is a must-have for any classroom and for any kid who is dealing with the struggles of dyslexia. There is so much to love here. From the short biographies of people who have found success while living with dyslexia, to the inspirational quotes, to the insights shared from those on how they felt after learning they had dyslexia, to the wonderful illustrations provided by different illustrators. Hands down, I highly recommend this book for families, libraries, and communities.

And now for the RAFFLE for today's Giveaway Prizes! 

1) A 20-minute Ask-Me-Anything with author Ellen Tarlow

2) A 20-minute Ask-Me-Anything with author Carrie Finison

3) A 20-minute Ask-Me-Anything with author Monica Acker

4) A signed copy of A Costume for Charly, plus a PB query critique package from author C. K. Malone to US address

5) Winner's choice: A copy of Little Medusa's Hair Doo-Lemma to US address PB manuscript/query critique from author Jennifer Buchet

To earn an entry, comment on the blog post below (perhaps on a favorite SEL book)


and then enter the rafflecopter here.


  1. Such an amazing selection of books! Perfect choices to address the various needs that pop up in the classroom.

  2. I love so many of these books!

  3. ❤️🥰 Another day of great suggestions! BRAVE LIKE MOM is my favorite!

  4. I recognize a lot of these names as authors who have been especially supportive of others in the writing community. Thanks to all of you for your generosity and encouragement.

  5. Great post! SEL themes are so important and needed :)

  6. I would love to win one of these prizes; I write a lot of SEL so this would be huge!

  7. Amazing books! So many of these have been on my radar! Can’t wait to read them :)

  8. I've read three of these. Now I need to read more. Thank you, Shaunda, for giving me yet another reason to head to the library!

  9. Books perfect for gifting all year long! We can always learn and grow more from one another!


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