It can be difficult to talk to your children when things are scary in the news. Youth staff have gathered some resources that could be helpful when having these conversations with your children. Rereading favorite stories or re-watching favorite movies can also be very comforting to children in times of stress.
Not every resource is right for every child or family. If you need guidance on what will best meet your specific needs, library staff can help you when choosing items.
Resources to Use With Your Child
These books and resources are appropriate to share with your children or have information about talking with your child: When Things Are Scary
This little girl was excited her birthday finally arrived. She had a rather lengthy wish list, with lots of cool gadgets she wanted for her birthday. However, when Grandma came over, she gave her grand-daughter a very unexpected gift. How surprising! She didn’t know how to react! See how this story evolves as one sweet youngster turns her unwanted gift into something simply amazing. As you may have heard, “when life gives you lemons, make lemonade.”
Is it okay to be afraid? Comedian and late night television host Seth Meyers, will immediately trap his new preschool audience with his first picture book, I’m Not Scared, YOU’RE Scared. Bear will not admit he is afraid of just about everything. When rabbit suddenly needs rescuing, Bear overcomes all his fears to rescue his friend. You will love this read-a-loud with its repetitive text.
Ariel Goldberg is in middle school, dealing with friendship and learning challenges. Ariel is also dealing with family issues, as her beloved older sister Leah leaves home to marry Raj, the Indian man that she has fallen in love with. When Leah’s parents refuse to accept the marriage, Ariel realizes that it is through poetry that she is best able to communicate her feelings about all that is happening in her life.
This story takes place shortly after the Supreme Court decision Loving v. Virgina in 1967 and is inspired by the author’s own family history.
Ophelia, or Ophie, wakes up one night to her father telling her she needs to get out of the house. Moments later, some men from town come and set it on fire. It is only later that Ophie discovers her father was killed the night before, and that his ghost came to give her the message. She and her mother flee Georgia for Pittsburgh, where they must live with Ophie’s sweet great aunt, but also her horrible aunt and cousins. Seriously, they are really unpleasant! Ophie’s mother gets a job as a maid in a very rich family’s home, and soon Ophie must come to work there as well. All the while, she keeps seeing ghosts, and what’s more, the ghosts know she can see them. They start to ask her for things, things they need said or done so they can pass on. Ophie stumbles across a mystery at her job, and her curiosity and desire to help cause her to put herself in danger, all in the name of solving the mystery and helping one very charming ghost.
This book takes place in the 1920s, and Ophelia’s family is black. Her father is killed because he tried to vote. Even though black men got the right to vote in 1870, it was basically impossible in the South at that time. And even though Ophie and her mom come to the north, they still experience a lot of racism and bad treatment. The story is a hard and sad one, but also very exciting, and by the end, I was so proud of Ophie for her bravery and compassion. If you like your ghost stories with some historical facts sprinkled in, pick up Ophie’s Ghosts by Justina Ireland. I listened to the book, which was wonderful, so if you like audiobooks, give it a listen.