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Choices for Children’s Books Focused on Grief, Loss, or Separation

Clam with Character provides social-emotional learning particularly focused on healing trauma. It’s so important to continue the process around grief at home or as needed at school. Parents, teachers, counselors, and even psychotherapists can use children’s books to start the conversation around what the child may be experiencing after a loss or during grief. It doesn’t matter how old the kids are, if they still like to read with you, then these books are appropriate because of the message they give. It may even be helpful for the adult. These are my top three choices for books to read with children when they are experiencing pain from a loss.

1. The Invisible String by Patrice Karst

The Invisible String is a beautiful book with lovely illustrations that will help children realize that they are always connected with the people they love no matter where they are. It is the perfect book to help kids cope with separation from people they enjoy being with during the COVID-19 pandemic. It also touches on how those who have passed are always with us. Read the book together, then ask the child to draw themselves and the invisible string to someone. This will get your conversation started.

2. The Memory Box by Joanna Rowland

The Memory Box is a great book to introduce kids to the idea of a memory box for those they miss. It helps kids overcome the fear that they will forget their loved ones. Read the book then start a memory box with the children.

3. In A Jar by Deborah Marcero

In A Jar teaches that no matter how far away people are from you, the memories you created with them will always be there. The beautifully illustrated book shows how Llewellyn, a little rabbit, will eventually go back to the old things he enjoyed doing before he lost his friend and that eventually, he will meet a new friend to collect memories with even though he hasn’t forgotten his old friend.


Tear Soup by Pat Schwiebert and Chuck DeKlyen is a slightly longer book and may be considered a coffee table book. However, it is heartwarming and insightful to understand what someone experiencing loss may be going through. This book validates the grieving experience and the fact that everyone overcomes their grief at their own pace.

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