The Technology Tail
This book is appropriate for kids from first through sixth grade. It addresses the topic of social media and the permanency of posts and comments that kids make on the various platforms. Unkind words may be easy to type but the affect they have on others is long-lasting and hurtful. Kids learn through storytelling that their nasty responses ruin relationships and reflect negatively on themselves even more than the object of their opinions.
Valuable Books for Kids About Social Media and Technology
Toddlers, teens, tweens and everyone in between are becoming increasingly reliant on technology and cell phones, so we've come up with a list of good children's books about this very topic. We have scoured our resources to identify books that appeal to all ages. These books are a good blend of humor and gravity about the downside of spending too much time on social media and playing video games. The stories address online bullying, problems with talking to strangers via chatrooms, and the toll it takes on a child's mental health when screen time is kept in check.
TEK: The Modern Cave Boy
Tek: The Modern Cave Boy engages little readers with humor and irony. A boy is so obsessed with his devices that he actually regresses to caveman life and can utter only one word- Ugh. His family must act to save their boy from his electronics addiction and teach him how to engage with real people once again.
When Charlie McButton Lost Power
We've all been there! There is a power outage, the internet is down, and we simply do not know what to do with ourselves. Charlie is experiencing a crisis of sorts when his video gaming comes to a grinding halt. Triple A batteries will save the day, but the only ones to be found are inside his sister's precious talking doll. Follow along as Charlie tries to solve this dilemma and keep his cool despite video game withdrawal.
Bruno Has One Hundred Friends
For every kid who experiences blurred lines between online friends (perhaps in the hundreds or more!) and the real life, much smaller circle of buddies, this is a darling book that must be read. Bruno the bear is out on a walk in the forest when he discovers an interesting black device that opens a whole new world. He quickly becomes consumed with a digital universe, and it's not until the battery dies that he reconnects with his real-life furry friends.
Mia Measures Up
Cyber bullying is a serious concern that lots of kids unfortunately encounter in their social-media driven lives. Mia is an ambitious girl who runs a cupcake business. She also desires her independence like other pre-teen girls, and pushes boundaries with her parents. One day, she discovers that someone is bullying her online, and she is determined to get to the bottom of it right away.
An enlightening picture book from a best-selling author tells the story of Blip who loves nothing more than being connected to her computer. After a blackout forces her outdoors to play, a world of color brightens her life.
The Right Hook of Devin Velma
For older readers who like to delve into a good chapter book, here's a fun read that perfectly captures the desire of some teens- internet fame! Devin is a shy kid who plots to pull off a big surprise at an NBA game for the sake of going viral. Every kid who has ever dreamed of online fame, here's a good read packed with some valuable lessons about taking risks for the sake of viral fame and the fallout that ensues.
Me, Myselfie & I: A Cautionary Tale
Poor mom is SO old-fashioned and out of touch! Her kids decide to fix this problem by buying her a smartphone for her birthday. What begins as some innocent picture-taking here and there quickly turns into a full-blown obsession. Mom is so busy capturing everything on her phone that she is missing out on the experiences.
We highly recommend Posted by John David Anderson for the middle school set. When cell phones are banned, the students take to replacing their texts with sticky notes left on lockers and throughout the building. Realistic and relatable, a book that tackles a most important lesson at the core of social media- words matter. Both kind and cruel words have an enormous impact on the emotional wellbeing of the receivers and the ever-changing social dynamics of tweens.
A very timely book for the younger internet-browsing crowd covers the dangers of meeting strangers online. Chicken is shopping online for all the supplies needed to keep the farm running smoothly. When she meets a "friend" over the computer, she learns an important lesson about staying safe and not trusting others who are not as they seem online.
A beautiful, award-winning book that showcases our dependency on electricity and what happens when an entire city experiences a blackout. In one particular household, a mother has to step away from her computer and a daughter eventually puts down her cell phone. All of the family members ultimately come together to enjoy the nighttime stars and play boardgames. A fantastic look at how we can all be under the same roof and yet entirely disconnected from each other.
Meet Dot. She is a bright, dynamic little girl who has a big problem. She's addicted to electronic devices. Dot is so entrenched in her online world that she is missing out on so many things. One day Dot discovers that she can embark on an outdoor adventure and use her technological expertise to guide her way.
Queen of Likes
A light and timely read for the 9+ crowd that seems to equate self-worth and popularity with social media "likes." A social media queen learns the hard way that their is life after her cell phone is taken away. When a seventh grader reaches newfound social status after a post, she is transformed and consumed by continuously seeking self-affirmation through more and more posts. When she abuses her phone privileges and it is taken away, she must adjust to a life without social media attention.
Katie Friedman Gives Up Texting!
Gasp!!!! The title says it all. This is a fun, easy read with lots of funny illustrations and the kind of humor middle school kids love. Rife with boyfriend drama, far flung aspirations, and a challenge with a big reward, this book will be read in one sitting. And maybe, just maybe, it will encourage some teens to put down their phones.
There is a lesson in this funny book for little kids and adults alike. We've all written or received a text or email where the tone is misinterpreted. Electronic communication leaves a lot to be desired (...the use of emojis can help!) when delivering a message that may come across the wrong way. Nerdy Birdy learns the hard way how to deliver his tweets and not hurt feelings along the way.
If You Give a Mouse an iPhone
Our phones have the power to take us far away places from the comfort of our own homes. The only problem is that we sometimes miss out on all the real fun happening right in front of us! That is exactly what happens when you give a mouse an iPhone. He gets so lost in his technology that he loses touch with all the special people nearby. I think we all know a kid or two who will relate to this book about the perils of technology.
We all need a gentle reminder to put away our iPhones, iPads, laptops and any other technology so we can enjoy a peaceful night of slumber. A creative parody based on a classic bedtime story, this is a picture book for kids and adults of all ages. For those who need feel compelled to check their phones just one last time, we are reminded that it is time to shut down and unplug. All the texts, social media updates, and videos will be waiting for us in the morning.
Polly and the Screen Time Overload
Polly just received a brand new tablet, and like a lot of kids her age, she quickly becomes glued to the screen. Things get so bad that she misses out engaging in the real world around her. When she takes a trip to visit her grandparents at their farm, her problem becomes obvious to everyone around her. Polly does not play with the farm animals or talk to her cousins. Finally, her wise grandfather teaches her an important lesson about moderation.
But It's Just a Game
This is the tale of a little boy with a big addiction. His passion for video games has taken over his life. He loves the thrill of holding the controller in his hand and making all kinds of exciting things happen on the screen. And when he messes up and makes a mistake, he can just start all over again. There is a lot of material for young gamers to think about in this helpful story about taking control of your real life, not a fantasy world on the video screen.
The Berenstain Bears' Computer Trouble
Papa Bear is excited to bring home a computer for his family. At first he is happy about their enthusiasm for this new electronic toy. But pretty soon Papa notices a startling trend. Every single day the cubs, and even Mama Bear, spend an increasingly longer period of time staring at the screen. After a little while, they are no longer interacting with each other and the cubs are not going outside to play with their friends. Papa begins to question whether he made a bad decision buying the computer. Then he realizes he must teach his family a valuable lesson about self-discipline and screen time.
# Goldilocks: A Hashtag Cautionary Tale
A modern-day fractured fairytale about Goldilocks, a gal with a goal to gain more followers. A savvy technology user, she already creates lots of good content and gets lots of likes. But she is ready to up her game and decides to take a more daring approach. So, she breaks into the home of some bears, eats their porridge, and takes a nap in their bed. She records her actions and applies savvy hashtags along the way. What she doesn't think through is the reaction of Daddy Bear when he sees her content online. This timely story is a warning sign for kids who cross into dangerous online territory.
Digital World: How to Connect, Share, Play, and Keep Yourself Safe
The digital world opens up an online playground where kids can explore for hours. Reading news stories, watching videos, and following social media accounts are all part of the fun. This guide, which is part of the American Girl series, is written for young children who need to learn important internet safety measures. It is chock full of quizzes and puzzles to reinforce the importance of not communicating with strangers, steering clear of cyber bullying, and other issues.
Read Kids Books To Help Them Us Social Media Responsibly
As this blogpost is being written, it's highly likely that a new hot app is already spreading like wildfire amongst the tween and younger crowd. Kids are growing up with a dependency on their smartphones and other devices, whether we like it or not. We can reminisce all we want about our own childhood and the freedom of living without the stronghold of social media. And hey, if you are a parent who has successfully kept the social apps off your children's phones or at least managed the amount of screen time using them, kudos to you! For the rest of us, we may need a little help talking to our kids about using social media responsibly, safely, and moderately. Within each of these stories is an overarching theme about not engaging with strangers online, which is one of the most boundaries when using social media. Reading the best children's books about social media and technology will help open a dialogue about how to stay safe on the internet.
Discover the Kids' Books to Help With Emotional Wellbeing