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Bringing a new baby home can be a difficult concept for a toddler to understand. We do our best to prepare them prior to the baby’s arrival and reading books can help with that concept. They identify with the characters and may start to have a better understanding on what might happen in regards to crying and limitations that come with a baby.
Below is a list of books we personally own, have gifted to other family and friends when expecting a new baby, or recommendations from other “been there done that” mom friends! Consider these “big brother” or “big sister” books to read before baby’s arrival or as a hospital gift.
- I’m a Big Sister by Joanna Cole – I highly recommend this book which shows the different things you can do as a big sister that a new baby cannot yet do. It’s spoken in a positive voice and Brielle was most fond of the fact that “big sisters can have apples and ice cream but babies can’t.” It’s all about the sweets people! (And while I haven’t read it, I see she also wrote I’m a Big Brother which I can only assume is similar!)
- My New Baby by Rachel Fuller – We have this book and read it often those first few months after Hailey’s arrival. The children are shown as gender neutral so it can works for both boy or girl siblings. To be honest, I am not fond of the words in this book as to me, I feel like they make the toddler sound negative and bratty. Instead we turn the pages and create our own story with Brielle as the big child and Hailey as the baby pictured. Brielle now “reads” the story to us pointing out all the differences between the big girl Brielle and her little sister and I really think it shows common scenarios (even down to the mom baby wearing and the toddler in a fuzzy pom pom clad winter hat!)
- I Am A Big Sister and I Am A Big Brother – These are two books we don’t personally own but were recommended by fellow 2nd time moms. Both had been gifted to families with boys and girls (around age 2/3) and they were well received by both genders on what to expect when baby arrives.
- The Berenstein Bears’ New Baby – We gifted this book to my niece Brinley as a hospital big sister gift when her sister, Natalie, arrived. My sister-in-law, Lauren, sent me the sweetest photo of them enjoying the book at the hospital saying she’s now a fan of the Berenstein Bears series! It focuses on finding a new bed for Brother Bear since his sister is to arrive soon and he’ll be giving his bed to her. We know that happens in so many homes so it’s a great message to give to the kids!
- The Berenstein Bears’ Baby Makes Five – For those those adding to the family for a third time, check out this book which we gifted to my sister when my 3rd nephew was coming.
- Good Night New Baby – If you toddler is already familiar with books from the “Good Night Our World” series (which has places like Good Night Ocean and states like Good Night New York City) then they will love to reach this one at night before bed!
- Hello in There! A Big Sister’s Book of Waiting (Growing Hearts) – One of the rare books of this list that talks about the waiting period before baby arrives when they’re still in the womb!
- Little Miss, Big Sis – A recommendation from a fellow mom of an older daughter when her younger sister was on her way!
- Pig Meets Pug – We don’t personally own this one (but would love to!) but it was recommended for this category. Pug likes his home and his stuff but then Pig moves in. It’s a story about learning to share and create friendships with new people that come into your life which is a fitting lesson for this season of change in the big brother/big sister’s life!
Looking for more inspiration for big and little siblings? Check out the welcome bags my girls gave each other upon meeting which includes free printable gift tags.
Those looking for ways to prepare a toddler for a new sibling, make sure to check out this post from my experience!
And make sure to read this follow up post with tips on surviving the first few weeks with a toddler and a newborn, written shortly after Hailey’s arrival!