My Blended Family
Olivia has a big, blended family with step brothers and sisters. Even though her home is especially busy, she loves the special relationships that make her family unique. One day her teacher assigns a class project requiring each student to make a family tree. Her friend, Lenny, comes home with Olivia to learn more about what life is like for her. Overall, a very bright, cheery picture book about stepfamilies perfect for preschool and kindergarten.
Helpful Children's Books About Stepfamily Dynamics
Families come together, grow, and change in all sorts of different ways. Events like marriage, separation, divorce, birth of children, and adoption are just a few of the more common ways that families evolve and take different forms. One particularly momentous occasion is when children from different families are blended into one. Oftentimes this involves two people, who happen to have kids from previous relationships, who decide to come together in a committed relationship or marriage. When this occurs, kids may feel insecure about their place within this new family dynamic. Reading kids' books about stepfamilies is a great way to open a conversation with your own children about their feelings and emotions. It is also helpful to read children books about divorce for little ones struggling with the separation of their biological parents.
When Otis Courted Mama
A young coyote, Cardell, lives quite a contented life in the southwestern desert. Although his parents are no longer together, they love him just the same. Then one day a new coyote named Otis comes into the picture. To Cardell's dismay, Otis has taken a special interest in his mama. Although Otis doesn't make special pancakes or play fun games, Cardell's mama seems to be quite smitten with him. The little coyote experiences a wide array of emotions due to this unwelcome disruption to his home life. A highly recommended story for little kids adjusting to a parent who is starting to date or to the presence of a new step parent.
Life With My Family
A little girl finds her life as part of a large, blended family to be noisy and chaotic. She sits back and observes all of the frenzied activity around her, like her baby brother throwing food and her father burning himself while ironing. There never seems to be any peace and quiet. So she goes on an imaginary journey where she envisions her family living as a pack of wild animals. As she considers what their behaviors would look like, she comes to the conclusion that her (loud, frenzied, messy) family is really quite perfect.
Families, Families, Families!
Funny animal families and hilarious rhymes fill the pages of this book that celebrates inclusiveness. Every kind of family is represented, including stepfamilies. The prevailing message is that love defines a family. So it doesn't matter if you have two dads, one step mom, a gigantic grandpa, or really any blend of family members. This joyous book about love, acceptance and family is one that all kids should read!
Cat Dog Dog: The Story of a Blended Family
A creative look at the impact of a blended family from the perspective of the pets. With just a couple of words on each page, the cartoonish illustrations tell the story of what happens when cats and dogs become step-siblings. When their human parents get married, they are forced into a less-than-ideal living arrangement that is especially felt when they all try to snuggle into bed. And then to make matters worse, a brand new baby is soon added to the mix! Short, silly, and on-point for preschoolers who are part of a blended family.
Step One, Step Two, Step Three and Four
It's bad enough that her mother is going to remarry to a guy named Larry. But this union brings some baggage along with it, namely four brothers. Determined to do everything in her power to keep these step-siblings out of her life, a feisty little girl creates all sorts of obstacles. In the end, she learns that accepting her new and much larger family may have some perks. An award-winning story geared toward preschool and early elementary aged children.
A moving collection of poems conveys the emotional journey of step-brothers who learn to live together. When one boy's mom and the other boy's dad get married, the blended family lives together under one roof. The older boy, Xavier, is not happy about this arrangement, especially since he now has to share a room with Chris. At first he refuses to accept the young boy as his little brother. But with time, and a few expected struggles along the way, the boys eventually works out their differences.
A Family is a Family is a Family
One little student is struck with fear when a teacher asks the class to share what makes each of their families special. She is afraid to describe what life looks like at her home since it has always seemed different. One by one, the other kids in the class talk about all their various family members. One child is raised by two dads, another child lives with his grandmother, and someone else lives with several step siblings. After hearing all these stories, the little girl realizes that a family is made up of people who love you and don't fit a particular mold.
My Mom's Wedding
Pinky is honored to serve as the ring bearer in her mother's upcoming wedding. She is happy for her mom and loves her future step father. But like a lot of kids, she has conflicting feelings. Deep down inside, she wishes that her parents would get back together. When Pinky sees her father, she asks him if he will take the ring and re-marry her mother. When he gently reminds her that they will always just be friends, Pinky can finally feel happy and guilt-free about loving her step father.
A darling story about a family of chipmunks and squirrels who unexpectedly find themselves sharing the same home. When a gigantic thunderstorm blows in, these woodland critters all seek shelter in the same hollow of a oak tree. At first they must work through some disagreements, but ultimately learn that they are better together! This story is a wonderful choice to read children of blended families. Little readers will relate to the squabbles and learn how to compromise so that everyone can get along.
Grace is a bright girl who is excited about the opportunity to visit her father. Her parents are divorced and her dad lives with his new family overseas, in Africa. Her beloved Nana accompanies her on this special trip where she gets to know her father, who she hasn't seen since she was very little. Through this physical and emotional journey, Grace learns that love has no boundaries and that she can have a special relationship with her father despite the miles that separate them. A thought-provoking story for kids with step families who live far away.
The Ring Bearer
The big wedding day has arrived and Jackson is proud to have the important job of ring bearer. He knows exactly what to do, but he is still quite worried. His soon-to-be step-sister is the flower girl, but she doesn't seem to be taking her job very seriously. Will she stop acting so silly and do her job? An endearing story about a most special day shared by blended families. The illustrations capture the love, excitement, anticipation, and nervousness of everyone involved, especially Jackson!
Florence and Her Fantastic Family Tree
Florence is assigned a seemingly simple task by her teacher. She and her classmates are instructed to make family trees with branches for all of their family members. For most kids, it is a relatively straightforward project. But Florence has a particularly large, messy family that doesn't seem to look like the others. For instance, she has six parents and more siblings than she can count. She worries about how she will fit everyone onto the tree and if there is even enough space on her teacher's wall to hang her paper. Finally, she embraces the project and find creative ways to include everyone, like using leaves and berries. Simple text and captivating illustrations will appeal to little kids who also have big, crazy, loving families.
Ethan's Stepmom: A Story About Stepparents
There are many reasons why a stepparent can enter a child's life. No matter the circumstance, parents need to be prepared for a bumpy start. In this story for preschoolers, Ethan is trying to figure out whether to accept this new mom in his life. In very easy language to understand, readers can follow along his emotional journey as he finally realizes all the good things about his stepmom.
Chapter Books For Tweens About Blended Families
Tweens are likely to experience a wide gamut of emotions when thrust into the middle of a blended family. Reading books about others who experience this same family dynamic can be helpful. Each of these tween chapter books about stepfamilies gives some insight about what it's like for tweens and teens adjusting to a new home life. There are new relationships to figure out, like how to get along with brand new step brothers and step sisters who become family seemingly overnight. It's also not easy for tweens in the middle of adolescence to welcome step-parents into their lives, especially when these adults take on an authoritative role. The characters in these books for tweens all shed light on some difficult situations and learn some valuable lessons that will help readers as well.
Apart from sharing the same first name, the two Naomis don't have much in common. One of the girls is an outgoing leader who enjoys being involved in clubs and activities. The other girl prefers to spend quiet time in the backyard with her best friend. When their divorced parents decide to date each other, neither Naomi is happy with the arrangement. When the parents enroll the girls in a class together, they are forced to confront each other and their new reality. A heartfelt story that does not gloss over the real challenges of a blended family.
This graphic novel for middle-grade readers is about the trials and tribulations of an adolescent girl adjusting to a new stepfamily. When Jen and her mother move out of the city to live on the farm that belongs to her mother's boyfriend, she is less than thrilled. It's bad enough that she has to leave her whole life behind, but now she has to contend with new "step" sisters. Plus, Jen finds all of farm chores, like cleaning the chicken coop and taking care of customers at the farmer's market, to be almost more than she can handle. Kids will relate to Jen's struggle to adjust to a new home and find her place in the new family.
Mia's Baker's Dozen
This easy-reader chapter book features Mia, a vibrant girl whose life is falling into place. She has adjusted to life at home with her mother along with her new stepfather and step brother. And Mia especially enjoys visiting her father on the weekends. The only trouble confronting Mia is Spanish class. Although Mia is fluent, as are all of her parents, she struggles with reading and writing the language. She keeps her almost-failing grade a secret for fear of causing problems at home. Eventually, though, she has to let all three of her parents know about her problem. To her surprise, they all work together to help Mia master Spanish in the classroom.
Love Like Sky
Told from the perspective of G-Baby, an adolescent girl who is having trouble adjusting to her new family, this story will resonate with so many tweens of divorced parents. She and her little sister, Peaches, live with their mom and step father. G-Baby becomes so preoccupied with winning the approval of her glamorous step sister, Tangerine, that she neglects Peaches. And to make matters worse, they rarely see their biological father. So when Peaches gets really sick, their mother and father fight more than ever before and G-Baby is must find the inner strength to get through it all.
Macy McMillan and the Rainbow Goddess
Winner of numerous book awards and accolades, this middle grade novel tells the story of Macy McMillan. As sixth grade is coming to a close, there are a lot of changes in store. Her mother put their house up for sale as she prepares for her upcoming marriage. Macy is not thrilled with having a new stepfather and is even less enthused about her new six-year old step siblings. When her mother sends her next door to help a senior neighbor pack up her home, Macy is not sure how much more she can take. But Iris, an old woman preparing to spend her final days in a nursing home, shares sage advice and wisdom through her stories. And in listening to her words, Macy learns to find the courage to face the changes in her own life.
There are many layers to unpeal in this complicated story about an eleven year old named Isabella. Her black father and white mother are divorced, so Isabella spends her time split between homes. To make matters more complicated, she goes back and forth between two very different neighborhoods. Her dad and his girlfriend live in a fancy home in the rich part of town while her mother and her boyfriend live in a more modest section. So Isabella has to juggle different economic identities while dealing with inquisitive strangers who question her ethnicity. As pressure mounts and her divorced parents continue to fight, Isabella wonders if she will ever escape her tension-filled life.
The Stepmom Shake-Up
After Grace's mom passed away, she and her father formed a very special bond. They enjoy the same activities, like taking care of their dog and memorizing trivia about all the US presidents. As far as Grace is concerned, their little family of two is perfectly fine. But after awhile, her father decides it's time to start dating, which means that a potential stepmom could enter the picture. Determined not to let this happen, Grace and her best friend start scheming. In a surprising twist of events, this little girl learns that maybe a shake-up is exactly what her family needs after all.
Olivia Bean, Trivia Queen
Olivia Bean has a particular goal in mind- to win enough money on Jeopardy! so she can visit her dad in California. He moved there a couple of years ago with his new family, and Olivia desperately misses him. With an upcoming event on the game show just for kids, Olivia believes this is her opportunity. Friends and family, including her annoying, soon-to-be stepfather, all pitch in to help her study for the contest. Will she acquire enough knowledge in her weakest category, geography, to take first place? A fun, fast-paced middle grade novel about a bright girl balancing life between two families.
Two Steps Forward
Told from the alternating perspective of step siblings, Wheaties, Lucy, Annabel, and Ben, this coming-of-age novel has great appeal. When the blended family relocates from Australia to L.A., each of the kids has unique ups and downs as they adjust to a new life. From first crushes to leaving old friends behind, these kids deal with life's many milestones. On top of everything, they have to deal with a tumultuous relationship between their parents which constantly threatens to ruin the status quo. An excellent sequel to The Steps, this chapter book about the challenges within stepfamilies offers an honest perspective.
The Thing About Leftovers
A highly readable, middle-grade novel about Fizzy, a girl who feels like she's lost her place in a family. Everything about her life was wonderful until her parents got divorced. Fizzy is used to putting a smile on her face and pretending that her life is great, but faking happiness becomes a bit much for this southern girl. Her new stepmom is over-the-top with her perfectionist ways and her mother's boyfriend is dismissive towards her. Fortunately, an upcoming cooking contest provides Fizzy with the distraction she needs. Heartfelt and relatable, this book is a fast and honest read for adolescent kids grappling with step-families.
Bea is for Blended
A highly satisfying, middle grade novel about a girl who is doing her best to navigate life. Lots of changes have been happening for Bea, and she's not exactly thrilled. Until recently, she and her mother had been a team. But now her mother is getting married, so her family is growing exponentially. In the midst of figuring out her role in a large, blended family, Bea has a new challenge at school. The all-girls soccer team that had been promised by the administration is no longer going to be offered. Refusing to give in without a fight, Bea joins forces with her teammates to push for the soccer team they deserve.
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Kids' Books About Blended Families
Blending children from different parents raises a lot of complicated issues. Kids who have recently experienced the divorce of their biological parents may not be ready for another familial change. But when single mother or father who is ready to date or even re-marry, the kids need to go through another period of adjustment. There are a whole host of challenges that step-parents need to consider when raising their children from previous marriages.
A good place to start is by reading children's books about blended families. The characters in these books share their emotions, both happy and sad, about their new step-parents and step-siblings. They wonder about where they fit into this new family unit and talk about all the changes within their family. Reading a variety of books about this topic will open up a conversation with your own children about their feelings, insecurities, and questions.