Navigating the turbulent waters of emotions can be particularly challenging for children, especially when it comes to anger. It’s an emotion that can be overwhelming, confusing, and sometimes frightening, both for kids and the adults in their lives.
Children’s books about anger can be incredibly powerful tools in this regard. They provide a safe and relatable way for children to understand and express their feelings. Through stories and illustrations, these books offer practical strategies for managing anger and understanding that it’s a normal, albeit complex, emotion.
In this blog post, we’ll explore a variety of books that address anger in ways that are both engaging and educational, suitable for a range of ages and situations. From the adventures of little critters and ninjas to the emotional journeys of Sophie and Allie, these books are more than just stories – they’re stepping stones towards emotional maturity and resilience.
Children’s Books about Anger
Here are our top picks for children’s books about anger:
1. Ravi’s Roar (Big Bright Feelings), by Tom Percival
“Ravi’s Roar” by Tom Percival is a compelling tale that delves into the emotional world of Ravi, the smallest in his family. Frustration builds when his small stature prevents him from enjoying activities like reaching monkey bars or riding the big slide. This frustration boils over into anger, transforming Ravi into a roaring tiger.
This transformation, while freeing, poses a new set of problems as Ravi realizes the impact of his uncontrolled anger on others. The book is a wonderful exploration of managing anger and effectively expressing feelings. It’s part of the Big Bright Feelings series, which addresses complex emotional intelligence topics in a child-friendly manner, promoting discussions about mental and emotional health, self-confidence, and feelings management.
“When I Feel Angry” from The Way I Feel Books series offers an insightful look into the emotion of anger and its impact on children. The story guides young readers through various scenarios that might trigger anger, helping them understand that feeling angry is a normal part of life.
What makes this book stand out is its emphasis on constructive ways to handle anger, encouraging children to find peaceful solutions rather than letting anger control their actions. This approach not only helps in managing immediate feelings but also in developing long-term emotional intelligence and coping strategies.
3. A Little SPOT of Anger, by Diane Alber
Diane Alber’s “A Little SPOT of Anger” is a unique and engaging story that tackles the complex emotion of anger in a way that’s relatable and understandable for children. The book uses the metaphor of a bright red spot to represent anger, visually depicting how small frustrations can escalate into overwhelming emotions.
It offers practical and fun techniques, like counting and breathing exercises, to help children manage their ‘spots’ of anger. This approach not only assists kids in recognizing and controlling their anger but also encourages them to be mindful of their emotions, promoting emotional growth and resilience.
4. Roaring Mad Riley: An Anger Management Story for Kids, by Allison Szczecinski
“Roaring Mad Riley,” written by Allison Szczecinski, is a charming and educational story about anger management, tailored for children. The narrative, enriched with delightful dinosaur characters, navigates through the journey of Riley and friends in understanding and controlling anger.
The book stands out by combining a story with activity elements, making the learning process interactive and engaging. It teaches kids various techniques, like deep breathing and counting, to calm down during angry moments. This book is not just a story; it’s a toolkit that empowers children to handle their emotions constructively.
5. I Am Stronger Than Anger, by Elizabeth Cole
Elizabeth Cole’s “I Am Stronger Than Anger” addresses the challenging task of managing anger in children. The book dives into various manifestations of anger, from shouting to throwing things, and offers insights on how parents can help their children navigate these intense emotions. It’s more than just a story; it’s a guide that equips children with the skills to manage their feelings effectively. The narrative focuses on self-regulation and emotional control, providing both children and parents with practical strategies to handle anger and transform it into a positive force for emotional growth.
6. Everyone Feels Angry Sometimes, by Dr. Daniela Owen
Dr. Daniela Owen’s “Everyone Feels Angry Sometimes” is a psychologist-recommended book that offers a profound understanding of anger management for children. The book creatively compares anger to an erupting volcano, emphasizing the importance of not letting frustration escalate into destructive behavior.
The book teaches mindfulness and self-control techniques, helping children understand that while feeling angry is normal, how they express and manage this emotion is crucial. This book is a valuable resource for children aged 3-10, offering them essential tools to handle anger constructively and maintain emotional balance.
7. Train Your Angry Dragon, by Steve Herman
Steve Herman’s “Train Your Angry Dragon” is an adorable and instructive tale from the My Dragon Books series, focusing on emotions and anger management. The story introduces children to the concept of patience and emotional regulation through the adventures of a dragon. The narrative is engaging and relatable, teaching kids that anger is a normal emotion but needs to be managed appropriately. This book provides kids with practical tips and strategies to deal with anger, thereby fostering emotional intelligence and resilience.
8. Angry Ninja: A Children’s Book About Fighting and Managing Anger, by Mary Nhin
“Angry Ninja” by Mary Nhin presents a relatable story about managing big emotions, particularly anger. The protagonist, Angry Ninja, resembles a ticking time bomb of emotions, often exploding in frustration. The story takes a turn when Angry Ninja learns a simple yet effective strategy from a friend to manage these overwhelming feelings. This book is part of the Ninja Life Hacks series, which aims to teach children essential life skills and emotional intelligence in a fun and engaging way, making it a great resource for parents and educators alike.
9. I Love You When You’re Angry, by Erin Winters
Erin Winters’ “I Love You When You’re Angry” is a heartwarming tale that reassures children of unconditional love, regardless of their emotional state. With adorable animal illustrations, the book conveys that both good and bad days end with the same loving affirmation. Authored by a Licensed Professional Counselor, it normalizes emotions, promotes unconditional love, and is sensitive to the needs of both biological and blended families, as well as trauma. The inclusion of a feelings chart and interactive questions adds a practical dimension, making it a valuable tool for parents and caregivers.
10. The Mean Bean: A Children’s Book About Anger Management, Jealousy, and Bullying, by Sonica Ellis
“The Mean Bean” by Sonica Ellis addresses complex emotions like anger, jealousy, and the challenges of sibling rivalry. Set in the town of Beansville, it tells the story of Little Lyla, a bean whose anger often gets the better of her. Through interactions with her family and peers, Lyla learns the importance of expressing and understanding her emotions. The book tackles the sensitive topic of family dynamics and sibling jealousy, offering a narrative that encourages open communication and emotional intelligence, making it a meaningful read for children aged 3 to 8.
11. I Choose to Calm My Anger, by Elizabeth Estrada
Elizabeth Estrada’s “I Choose to Calm My Anger” is a vibrant story that centers on Jackson, a character who grapples with understanding and managing his anger. Through rhyming text and colorful illustrations, Jackson learns various coping mechanisms for dealing with big emotions like anger. This book is part of the “Teacher and Therapist Toolbox: I Choose” series, designed with social emotional learning (SEL) in mind. It has been acclaimed by educators and therapists worldwide for empowering children to recognize their emotions and choose how to respond to them.
12. How to Take the Grrrr Out of Anger, by Elizabeth Verdick and Marjorie Lisovskis
“How to Take the Grrrr Out of Anger” by Elizabeth Verdick and Marjorie Lisovskis is a practical and humorous guide for children on managing anger. Aimed at kids aged 8 and up, it combines solid information and sound advice with engaging illustrations. The book provides strategies for expressing anger healthily and addresses contemporary issues like societal violence and the impact of texting and social media on anger. This revised edition is an effective resource for helping kids understand and deal with anger in today’s context.
13. When Miles Got Mad, by Sam Kurtzman-Counter and Abbie Schiller
“When Miles Got Mad” by Sam Kurtzman-Counter and Abbie Schiller offers a unique perspective on dealing with anger. The story begins with Miles, who becomes enraged when his younger brother breaks his favorite toy. His reflection in the mirror shows not himself, but a furry red monster, symbolizing his anger. The book guides Miles, and thereby the readers, in using words to express anger, aiding in managing this intense emotion. This approachable and engaging book is a valuable tool for children learning to regulate their emotions.
14. Llama Llama Mad at Mama, by Anna Dewdney
Anna Dewdney’s “Llama Llama Mad at Mama” captures the familiar scenario of a child’s tantrum during a shopping trip. Llama Llama, overwhelmed by the busy shopping environment, erupts into a tantrum, expressing the frustration many children feel in similar situations. The story gracefully addresses how Mama calms Llama Llama down and finds a way to make shopping a more enjoyable experience for both. This book is not only a delightful read but also offers parents and children relatable insights into handling public meltdowns and turning challenging situations into positive experiences.
15. When Sophie Gets Angry – Really, Really Angry, by Molly Bang
“When Sophie Gets Angry – Really, Really Angry…” by Molly Bang is an award-winning book that offers a profound insight into a child’s experience of anger. It depicts Sophie’s journey through her intense emotions, showing readers how she copes when overwhelmed by anger.
This Caldecott Honor book is an excellent tool for parents and educators to discuss the natural emotion of anger with children, encouraging them to find their own healthy ways to deal with it. Bang’s narrative invites readers to reflect on their own responses to anger, making it a valuable resource for emotional learning.
16. Allie All Along, by Sarah Lynne Reul
In “Allie All Along” by Sarah Lynne Reul, readers encounter Allie, a young girl who experiences a whirlwind of emotions, culminating in a fierce tantrum. The story explores the layers of anger and frustration, as Allie’s brother tries to help her find calmness and peace. Reul’s book, much like “When Sophie Gets Angry”, delves into ways children can regain their center in the midst of overwhelming emotions.
The vibrant illustrations capture the intensity of these feelings, offering a visual representation of the inner turmoil that words often cannot express. This book is a great conversation starter about emotional regulation for children.
17. I Was So Mad, by Mercer Mayer
“I Was So Mad” by Mercer Mayer features the beloved character Little Critter, who navigates a day filled with frustrating scenarios. Each moment of the day seems to bring a new reason for Little Critter to feel grumpy and irritable, from playground incidents to sandbox disputes. Mayer’s classic storytelling resonates with both children and parents, showcasing a realistic portrayal of the ups and downs of a child’s emotions. This book serves as an ideal medium to teach children about emotions and the importance of understanding and expressing them appropriately.
18. The Very Frustrated Monster: A Book About Frustration, by Andi Green
“The Very Frustrated Monster” by Andi Green, part of the WorryWoo Monsters series, introduces Twitch, The Monster of Frustration. Twitch constantly finds himself asking, “Why me?” and grappling with life’s unfairness. The book is a humorous take on handling frustration, making it relatable for anyone who has experienced days where everything seems to go wrong. Green’s creative storytelling and engaging illustrations provide a fresh perspective on dealing with frustration, offering valuable life lessons and encouraging resilience in a fun and memorable way.
19. Angry Octopus: Children Learn How to Control Anger, Reduce Stress and Fall Asleep Faster, by Lori Lite
Lori Lite’s “Angry Octopus” is an innovative story that teaches children progressive muscle relaxation and breathing techniques to manage anger and stress. Through the tale of an angry octopus calmed by a sea child, readers learn effective methods to relax, control anger, and even prepare for a peaceful sleep.
This book stands out for its practical approach to emotional management, making it a useful tool for children to unwind and deal with their feelings constructively. The story’s popularity and effectiveness are reflected in its success, including a feature on ABC’s Shark Tank, and it’s a favorite among parents for its helpful techniques.
20. Mouse Was Mad, by Linda Urban
“Mouse Was Mad” by Linda Urban is a charming story about self-expression and managing anger. The tale revolves around Mouse, who struggles to find the right way to express his anger, observing various animals like Bear, Hare, and Bobcat, each showing their unique way of being mad.
Mouse’s journey to discover his own method of dealing with anger – being still and quiet – is both endearing and instructive. Urban’s narrative, complemented by Henry Cole’s delightful illustrations, emphasizes the importance of finding one’s personal way to cope with emotions, making it an excellent resource for teaching children about emotional self-regulation.
Exploring the world of emotions through the lens of these beautifully crafted children’s books offers a unique opportunity for both learning and bonding. Each story we’ve discussed provides its own unique approach to understanding and managing anger. Whether it’s through the calming techniques of the Angry Octopus or the relatable frustrations of Little Critter, these books are invaluable resources for parents, educators, and caregivers.
They not only aid in teaching children about their emotions but also in developing essential life skills like empathy, patience, and self-regulation. These children’s books about anger are more than just bedtime stories; they are guides that help shape emotionally intelligent and resilient individuals. Let’s continue to embrace these valuable resources in our journey to help children understand and express their feelings in healthy and constructive ways.