Picture Books with Big Feelings

These last eighteen months have been a rollercoaster of emotions and I have ridden a few of them. Swept up in a terrible mood, tightness in your chest, a sadness that lingers longer than we want – these can be big yet normal feelings. Picture books can be a therapeutic tool. As we head back into a new and unusual school year, I wanted to share a few from my personal library.

Picture books can help identify emotions which can provide effective coping skills. The right book can help us name a feeling and see the difference between a feeling a behavior. They let us know that these things pass and most importantly, they let us know that we are not alone.

There are so many good picture books for teaching emotional intelligence, and these are just a few.

Today I Feel… An Alphabet of Feelings by Madalena Moniz

In My Heart: A Book of Feelings by Jo Witek

Why Do We Cry? by Fran Pintadera

Feeling down:

What’s Up, Maloo? by Geneviève Godbout

Bad Mood:

Sweep by Louise Greig

Making friends:

Found You by Devon Holzwarth

Shy Willow by Cat Min

The Dark:

Orion and the Dark by Emma Yarlett


Wemberly Worried by Kevin Henkes


When Sadness Is at Your Door by Eva Eland

The Bear and the Moon by Matthew Burgess

Niko Draws a Feeling by Bob Raczka

Things That Go Away by Beatrice Alemagna

AFTER THE FALL by Dan Santat

Larger list curated here: Secret Society of Books