Big sister books are vital when you have a daughter at home and a new bundle of joy on the way. These picture books about becoming a big sister will help your family prepare for the arrival of your new baby.
Prepare your daughter for a new baby with big sister books
Learning you are expecting a baby is exhilarating. From the moment you hear that first heartbeat, your own heart expands and you cannot wait for the day you get to snuggle your new bundle of joy.
But if you have a child at home already, they may not share the same excitement. You may feel trepidation as you wonder how your child will respond to a new baby in the house.
The best way to prepare your son or daughter to become a new big sibling?
Big sister books help ease the transition from only child to older sister
Using books to prepare a child to become a new big brother or sister is a phenomenal way to help your child understand how the dynamic of your home will change when your new addition arrives. Reading stories about babies, big brothers, and big sisters organically introduces this concept to children.
Older children will love learning how the baby grows and how they may participate in caring for their new little sibling. Stories also help normalize feelings of anxiety and jealousy that often arise when only children are no longer the center of their parent’s world.
With regard to younger children (my eldest had just turned one when we learned we were expecting again), it’s hard to know how much they take in from these stories. But there are some things I do believe.
Point to a mother’s round belly in a picture book — and then point to your own round tummy — to help your child makes connections between the book and their own life. As you read, use the words “big sister” and “baby” repeatedly, and then point to illustrations of a big sister and a baby to emphasize these concepts. As you read, give your child a new baby doll and show her hold to hold it just like the big brother or big sister in the story holds their new baby. Simplicity is fine – what matters is that you are introducing these concepts to get them ready!
Simply put, reading stories about a little girl becoming a big sister will help you help your daughter recognize she will soon have an exciting new role in the house. These stories also help to reassure her that she will forever be loved and cherished, no matter how many more babies arrive!
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Frequently asked questions
Yes, I can! Check out this list of our favorite big brother books!
Nine Months: Before a Baby is Born, by Miranda Paul and Jason Chin (featured below), is absolutely phenomenal. I love the way it juxtaposes pictures of the baby growing in mommy’s belly on one side of the spread, with the family getting ready on the other. This is a treasure for families, and I cannot rave about it enough!
Do you have a specific book you love about becoming a big brother?
I absolutely love Hello In There, by Jo Witek and Christine Rousey. It makes me cry every time! Spellbound, by Jess Townes and Jennifer Harney, and The New Small Person, by Lauren Child, are absolutely fabulous. Both are perfect for big brothers and big sisters!
Books to help older siblings prepare for a new baby
Here are some fantastic big sibling books that you’ll want to have on hand, no matter the gender of the child already in your home. From learning how a baby grows to teaching children how to care for a new baby to exploring the frustrations older siblings often feel when an infant invades their home, these books are all winners!
This is a lyrical, beautiful story about a family of three waiting for a baby girl to arrive. The left side of each spread details how the baby grows in mommy’s tummy, and the right side depicts the family preparing for the baby. The seasons change as the fetus grows, and as the baby gets bigger, the left panels begin to push onto the right ones, beautifully building the quiet anticipation as the three await their new bundle of joy. Even better? The detailed back matter is fabulously kid-friendly, helping you explain to your child what really happens during the nine months of pregnancy.
There is no doubt about it: new babies are mesmerizing! When they arrive, it’s as if someone casts a spell on every grownup who holds that tiny bundle. This is the dilemma young Willow faces when her new baby brother, Rowen, arrives. Willow and her sweet bunny love to play pretend, and they especially love magic. But will Willow’s magical powers be strong enough to break the charm that Rowen has cast on all of the adults? Or will Willow eventually become hypnotized by Rowen’s charm, too? This is hands down a favorite book for new big brothers and big sisters. It’s fun, unique, and such a creative take on becoming a big sibling!
Elmore Green is the center of his parents’ world, but when the baby arrives, Elmore wishes this new small person could go back to where he came from. What follows is a pitch-perfect story of Elmore’s emotional transformation as a big brother, from struggling to find his place in the family to feelings of jealousy, anger, and even indifference to falling hard for his new sibling. Elmore works through these emotions in such a relatable way that even young kids will be able to identify with his challenges. And the payoff — the way in which Elmore’s little brother comes to his rescue, which becomes the catalyst to Elmore’s gradual acceptance of his younger sibling — is sweet and emotionally resonant without being saccharine. This is one of our all-time favorite big brother books! For our full review of The New Small Person, click here!
This sweet, simple story reminds your oldest child that no matter how many babies arrive after him, he will always be the first. And the “firsts” you experienced with that child — from first smiles to first giggles to first steps and all the momentous milestones in between, were momentous for mom and dad as new parents. Sometimes, this is just the reminder a new big brother or big sister needs to remember that he has a special and important place in the house too, even upon a baby’s arrival.
I love the way this interactive book provides a road map for young kids, teaching them how to care for their new babies! From swaddling to shushing, tickling to tucking in, this book’s instructional text and hands-on nature help big siblings learn the best ways to care for newborns — and to be big helpers in the family. Brilliant!
“You can be a big helper, in your family!” Not gonna lie – Daniel Tiger is one of the best shows to happen to our family. He teaches compassion, patience, how to express feelings and, in this fabulous book, how you can be a big helper to mom and dad when they come home with a new baby. We love everything about Daniel, and these are the only books based on television shows I highly recommend!
Our favorite big sister books!
“Someone new is at our house. Do you know who it is?” Perfect for your very young children, this is a simple primer for a big sister who is still very little herself. While it’s not easy to relinquish the only child role, this book, together with it’s big brother companion below, is terrific for conveying to toddlers and young kids that they have an exciting new role ahead when they welcome an infant into their home — helping parents with the new baby! BUY THIS BOOK FROM:
I don’t know what it is about this book, but it makes me cry every time I see it. This dynamic author/illustrator duo can do no wrong in my eyes, and I simply adore every book they create. This tender story highlights the magic of waiting for a new baby, with a little girl talking to her mother’s belly and describing to her future brother or sister all the joyful things they will get to do together. Through whimsical illustrations and text that conveys the sweet girl’s exuberance, this one is a joy for all future big sisters!
In this stunningly illustrated book, a young girl anticipates the arrival of her baby sister. She asks tons of questions (naturally!), helps Mama and Dad with important tasks to prepare for baby’s arrival, and even draws Mama pictures and gives her lots of hugs and kisses when Mama feels super tired. Gently exploring what will happen when the baby arrives and conveying that there is enough love for everyone in the family, this calming, beautiful book is always a winner.
One small family has great big news: Little Miss is becoming a big sis! But when the baby arrives, the mystified big sibling wonders, “what now?” From watching the baby sleep, drool, and fuss to helping the baby eat, clap and crawl, this adorable read takes children on the journey one big sis faces as she welcomes a new baby to the family, a journey that doesn’t shy away from exploring frustration as well as joy. Anything by Amy Krouse Rosenthal turns to gold!
It’s tough to be a little girl in a big world. But when Matisse’s baby brother arrives, she learns that even though she may be small, she’s much bigger than her brother, and her role as big sister is super important. After all, who else can teach her brother the ropes and show him the world better than his big sis? With its vintage feel, this story has warmth and a classic feel that will cause your family to reach for it over and over again.
Kiely has no doubt that she is unbelievably famous. Why? Because the adoring paparazzi (aka her family!) have always followed her wherever she goes! But when her little sister arrives on the scene, Kylie has to figure out how to get back into the spotlight. Does that mean she’s got to make room for the new baby on stage? This one makes us laugh, and if read together with the first book in this darling duo, I am Famous, your family will be in for a treat!