Talking about Tough Topics with Kids

Alexis Millar is the former Digital Marketing Specialist at the Edmonton Public Library.

When major events happen, each family responds differently. Sometimes we use humour to cope, sometimes we search for facts to make sense of the world and sometimes we just need to acknowledge the new emotions we are feeling.

Whatever the conversation your family is having, there are books that can help you navigate these tough topics with your child. Check out some of our picks below for children age 3-6 to find the right fit for your family.

Helping Children Understand War

EPL Picks: Helping Children Understand War

It can be difficult to know what to say to children about war conflicts. These books can help parents and caregivers start the conversation about the impacts of war, and the importance of peace.

View Full List

About Emotions

EPL Great Stuff Preschoolers: Feeling Angry


It happens to all of us, something goes wrong and the angries come calling. These picture books are great to read with your little ones, and make the feelings a bit easier to understand.

View Full List

It happens to all of us, something goes wrong and the angries come calling. These picture books are great to read with your little ones, and make the feelings a bit easier to understand.

A little girl has a wonderful idea. With the help of her canine assistant, she is going to make the most magnificent thing! She knows just how it will look. She knows just how it will work. But making the most magnificent thing turns out to be harder than she thinks.
The Most Magnificient Thing

Little Monster has a bad day. His parents won't let him do any of the things he wants to! And he gets so mad he doesn't want to do anything at all. Until some friends come by with a fun suggestion.
I Was so Mad

View Full List

EPL Picks Preschool: Feeling Sad

Sadness is a big emotion and can be difficult for little ones to understand. Help your child learn more about and take care of their feelings with this stories to read together.

View Full List EPL Preschoolers Great Stuff: Anxiety

Anxiety is one of the most common mental health concerns for children. While anxiety can be normal and even helpful at times, it can also become problematic. These books aim to comfort and support anxious children, and help them to develop strategies to cope with their worries.

View Full List

Dealing with Death

EPL Picks Preschool: Coping with Death

Dealing with the death of a family member, friend, or pet is never easy. These books may help children to navigate their grief and provide opportunities for conversations about death, loss, and sadness.

View Full List

Bad Dreams

EPL Great Stuff Preschoolers: Nightmares

Nighttime can be scary, but if you have good friends and a few laughs you can make it through. Check out these picture books to help children cope with their nightime fears and nightmares.

View Full List

Moving Places

EPL Picks Preschool: Moving

Moving to a new place can be difficult, especially for young children. There is a new house to get used to and entirely new friends to make. Explore your child's feelings around moving with some of these picture books to read together.

View Full List

A Dose of Laughter

EPL Great Stuff Kids: When the Going Gets Tough, the Tough Start Laughing

What do we do when times are tough? We laugh! We shake! We holler! Here is a list of ten hilarious picture books the whole family can enjoy together.

View Full List

A Little Hope

EPL Great Stuff Preschoolers: Hope

Even when things seem dark, hope keeps us strong and makes room for light and new life.

View Full List

We are here to help!

Didn't find what you were looking for? Request your own Personal Picks book list online or talk to our Library staff.

Explore more tough topics