If your family will be adding a new baby, there are many ways to prepare your children for their sibling’s arrival. One effective way is through children’s picture books about pregnancy, birth, and babies.
Books about Pregnancy and Birth
Waiting for Baby / Esperando Al Bebé by Rachel Fuller (2009). For ages 1 to 4. Tells of a sibling’s trip with mom to the doctor, helping prepare for the baby, and meeting the baby at the hospital.
Mama’s Belly by Kate Hosford (2018). For ages 3 to 5. A girl asks her mother questions about the pregnancy and what it will be like when baby arrives.
Baby, Come Out! by Fran Manushkin (2014). For ages 3 to 6. A silly book about a baby who wants to stay in utero and the family’s humorous attempts to get her out.
We’re Having a Homebirth!! by Kelly Mochel (2012). For ages 4 to 7. Simple illustrations and brief details about home birth.
Hello Baby by Lizzy Rockwell (2000). For ages 4 to 7. Touches on all aspects of the baby-to-come, from prenatal development and doctor appointments to meeting baby at the hospital.
How You were Born by Joanna Cole (1994). For ages 4 – 7. Filled with vivid full color photographs, helps siblings understand a baby’s prenatal development, birth, and early days.
Hello Baby by Jenni Overend (2008). For ages 5 to 8. A beautifully illustrated story of a home birth.
When you were Inside Mommy by Joanna Cole (2001). For ages 5 – 8. Discusses fetal development, explaining the umbilical word, using the word uterus, etc.
What’s Inside your Tummy, Mommy by Abby Cocovini (2008). For ages 5 – 8. A book about fetal development, month by month, that the pregnant parent can hold up to her body to show the child how big the baby is at each stage.
Books about Babies and Siblings
My New Baby / Mi Nuevo Bebe by Rachel Fuller (2009) or My New Baby by Annie Kubler (2000). For ages 1 to 4. Tell the stories of new families. In each, the mother breastfeeds, and the father participates in all activities.
I’m a New Big Brother/Sister by Nora Gaydos (2010). For ages 2 to 4. A positive story about what it’s like to be a big brother or sister.
Tenemos un bebé / We Have a Baby by Cathryn Falwell (2008). For ages 2 to 4. A simple bilingual board book about loving a new baby. Multiracial family.
The New Baby by Mercer Mayer (2001). For ages 3 – 5, this story uses simple language to explain what it’s like to have a new baby and ways a sibling can play with the baby.
How to Welcome a New Baby by Jean Reagan (2022). For ages 3 to 6. How to prepare for and welcome a baby. Multiracial family.
I’m a Big Sister / Brother by Joanna Cole. Age 3 – 6. This story talks about what babies are capable of and what they need.
I Used to Be the Baby by Robin Ballard (2002). For ages 3 to 6. This book positively portrays sibling relationships and how a sibling can help the baby.
More to consider – all good, just not quite as good as the ones above: Best Ever Big Sister by Katz, I am a big brother / sister by Church, It’s Big Brother Time by Ahuja, You’re Getting a Baby Sister by Higginson; Little Miss, Big Sis by Rosenthal.
Books about Siblings feeling Resentful
Berenstain, Stan: Berenstain Bears and Baby Makes Five. 2000. Ages 5 – 8.
Hoban, Frances: A Baby Sister for Frances. 2011. Ages 5 – 8.
There are a lot of books about sibling rivalry and how awful it is to live with a new baby. I would not read those before the baby is born. We don’t want to set things up with the assumption that it will be bad! If it is hard for your child once the baby is there, then definitely check out those books with them, but let’s not start there.
There’s a Baby (DVD) by Penny Simkin (2013). For ages 3 to 8. A children’s film about a baby coming to Maia’s family. At https://pennysimkin.com.
About the Links:
Each book includes an Amazon affiliate link to make it easy for you to learn more about each book. If you click through on this link and then purchase anything, I do receive a small referral bonus at no extra cost to you. These books may also be available at your local library. If you would like to preview the content try searching YouTube for “[title of book] read aloud” and there are videos of many of the books in this list. I do encourage you to then go on to purchase the book itself to support the books’ creators.
Note: a similar post also appears on Good Days With Kids, a blog about parenting written by Janelle Durham, one of the co-authors of Pregnancy, Childbirth and the Newborn.