I wrote The Way I Feel picture books to help children name, understand, and manage their feelings–and to help their parents and other caregivers, who perhaps, like many of us, were not offered much help, themselves, with their own emotions.
I felt sure that such books would be of use to many children, parents, teachers, and caregivers, but even my experiences as a therapist working with young children and families, and my experiences as a mother and grandmother, had not prepared me for the touching responses of relief and comfort that these books have elicited.
It seems that having their adults read with them about a feeling, turning the pages and looking together at the illustrations of animal characters who are experiencing feelings the children, too, experience, places upsetting and confusing feelings into the safe world of a book, a safe world where feelings have names and where there are methods to manage them.
Cornelia Maude Spelman
Some reader comments:
When I Feel Angry: “Perfect book for my six year old. The examples of anger are very on- point for his age. We read it regularly.”
When I Miss You: “I got this for my 2.5 year old since Dad has been having to work away from home during the week and separation anxiety has escalated. We felt that this book was very age appropriate for him and when we read it he is very intent on the content. He normally gets to pick two books at bedtime and he has been asking for this to be re-read instead of having another book. “
When I Feel Scared: “A very good way to help preschoolers to identify what scared means, is caused by and give ideas for coping with the feeling that are useable.”
When I Miss You:”My little one requests this then huddles into the armpit for a bedtime story that hits a bit too close to home. We analyze every single scene – baby misses mommy but mommy at work. Baby misses daddy but daddy at work.”
When I Feel Scared: “The more we read it and talk about her feelings the more she’s realizing it is ok to feel that way (scared) and it will get better.”
When I Care About Others: “My son loves this book. He’s three, and he wants me to read it all the time. I think it promotes empathy and would highly recommend it.”
When I Feel Sad: “This was a book for a grandchild. My daughter said that my 5 year old granddaughter read it along with her three older siblings and each of them had comments. It is moving for a child.”
When I Feel Jealous: “This book is beautifully drawn and beautifully written. It has been very helpful for our family!”