I’ve mentioned Amy and the Feelings Basket before, specifically The New Arrival, about the arrival of a new baby, but there are actually more Amy and the Feelings Basket books in the series. We have The New Arrival, Dad’s Leaving, Brave Beats the Bullies and Starting School.
Amy and the Feelings Basket is a series by Debbie Kinghorn, an NLP Child Therapist and Learning Practitioner, illustrated by Louise Grundy and Sofie D.
This series of books, predominantly aimed at ages 4 – 8, includes stories with emotive topics and encourage children and parents to explore these difficult topics together.
The Magic Basket, the first book, opens with Amy crying on her bed because she doesn’t want to become a big sister. Her mother brings her a piece of cloth, which opens up into a blue magic basket. Amy puts her hand in the basket, and out comes Curious -a personified feeling who guides her through how to explore what she’s feeling. Being curious, Curious asks her what she was doing when her mother came in, and next thing you know, another feeling – Sad – comes into play. Curious and Sad help explore her feelings of worry about why her parents want another child, and help her realise that maybe they’re not trying to replace her, but ‘add to’ her. It’s quite a lovely message.
The New Arrival happens a few months later, obviously when the new baby enters the story and Amy learns to be a loving big sister with the help of
In Starting School*, Amy deals with the prospect of starting a new school. Confused and Confident help her prepare for the big day, and everything works out.
Brave Beats the Bullies is self explanatory, as Amy Thorpe is bullied at school and how she stands up to the bullies, and while it may not deter their behaviour, she adapts how it affects her.
Dad’s Leaving is kind of sad – specially in light of my own recent separation, but it does deal with the topic of dad leaving very well. This story introduces Finn, Amy’s neighbour, whose parents are splitting up. Finn deals with feelings of confusion, rejection and curiosity in this book, which helps him come to terms with the changes in his family.
What we love about the Feelings Basket Series
The books are beautifully illustrated, making big topics small child friendly. They deal with issues that can be hard to know how to broach, so they do serve a fantastic ‘starting point’ function if there’s something you need to talk to your child about. The last page has a ‘Your Feelings’ section so you can use their discussion starters and questions to see where your own child is at, which is useful.
The font is large and an easily readable format, which is great for younger readers to read to themselves.
I love the concept of the books too – it’s so much easier for children to understand some things in a story form.
The website also provides additional resources, including colouring and activity pages, which I always love for underpinning learning in a playful way.
What do don’t love about the Feelings Basket Series
The books are quite thin, and while the font is large and there’s only one ‘chapter’ they are quite wordy and probably fall in the chapter book category.I am not sure about their 4+ designation though, due to their wordy nature. But I guess big emotions need big words and you could always split it up into different reading sessions if you need to.
Where can I find the Feelings Basket Series?