Going from one child in a family to two is a huge transition, not only for the parents but for the child who is getting a new sibling. Every family is different and every child will react differently when meeting (and getting to know) their new brother or sister, but having these books on hand should hopefully help ease the transition! I have also found that a consistent bedtime routine, that includes a few good books to read together, will provide you and your toddler space to communicate about this new transition (and any other topics that may need some one-on-one attention).
In our family getting used to a second child was an adjustment for us all, and as cliché as it sounds, time was the only thing that helped us get into a new groove. At first it seemed our daughter wanted nothing to do with her brother, now, and despite their three-year age gap, they are loving best friends (most of the time)!
And remember, an assortment of these books is also available at DylPop’s Book Shop when you purchase our “New Sibling” bundle. Good luck!!
Favorite Books for Introducing a New Sibling
1. Henry Helps with the Baby by Beth Bracken
There is a series of “Henry Helps” books that I recommend you check out for different reasons, but I love this sweet, simple story for new older siblings. Henry finds his sister a little loud, and very small, but quickly realizes he can help when she needs things. This read is best for children ages 1 – 4, and models some helpful sibling behavior.
From PBS’s Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood, “Big Brother Daniel” tells the story of the arrival of Daniel’s sister Margaret. The book explores ways that Daniel can help his parents and little sister. This story can be paired with some high-quality screen time if you’d like to bring the book to life a bit more for your child. This book is great for big siblings ages 2 – 5 years old.
3. I Used to Be Famous by Tara Luebee and Becky Cattie
Kiely had the attention of her family her entire life, but when her new baby sister arrives she feels more like a has-been than a superstar. Though it takes time, Kiely figures out that sharing the spotlight will grab the attention back from her adoring fans (parents / grandparents). I’d recommend this book for children ages 2 – 5 years old.
4. Hands Are Not for Hitting by Martin Agassi
An additional child in the house inevitably means sibling conflict. I found it helpful to introduce “Hands Are Not for Hitting” around the time my second child was born. This story teaches children that violence is never ok and offers other tools for kids to explore when they feel frustrated. I think this book is best for children ages 2 - 6 years old, however, my 1-year-old definitely listens in and has absorbed this message too.
5. Should I Share My Ice Cream by Mo Willems
Mo Willems is one of our favorite authors, so really any of his books I would recommend. I liked introducing this story during the new sibling transition because it discussed themes about friendship and sharing in a fun and obvious way. In my view, this book is great for children ages 1 – 6 years old.