Social Emotional Learning is at the forefront of educational practices to support ever growing student needs. Books are a wonderful way to introduce character education and teach young children about their feelings, mindset, and how to self-regulate. These are the 17 best SEL books for elementary students and are separated by topic.


Child happy and angry

1. Anh’s Anger by Gail Silver and Christiane Kromer

2. Feelings by Aliki

3. Glad Monster, Sad Monster: A Book About Feelings by Anne Miranda & Ed Emberley

4. I’m Mad (Dealing with Feelings) by Elizabeth Crary

5. I’m Frustrated (Dealing with Feelings) by Elizabeth Crary

6. In My Heart: A Book of Feelings by Jo Witek


Child hugging woman

7. Have You Filled a Bucket Today? by Carol McCloud

8. One by Kathryn Otoshi

9. The Invisible Boy by Trudy Ludwig

10. The Pinkish, Purplish, Bluish Egg by Bill Peet

11. Those Shoes by Maribeth Boelts


Daughter and Mother meditating

12. Ish by Peter H. Reynolds

13. Not a Box by Antoinette Portis

14. The Dot by Peter Reynolds

15. The Lemonade Hurricane by Licia Morelli and Jennifer E. Morris

16. The Listening Walk by Paul Showers and Aliki

17. The Three Questions by John Muth


Teaching children about their emotions can positively impact them for the rest of their lives. By reading books about regulating their feelings, empathy, and mindset can help them develop strong character traits. To find out more about social-emotional learning, check out our SEL blogs.

Do you want to learn how to create a comfort room in your school? Click here to find out how.


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