7 Books to Support Talking To Your Kids About Puberty
“Talking To Your Kids About Puberty” by Western MA mom, Lisa Woods.
There are many books available about puberty. These suggestions will help you be sure the information is in line with your child’s level of maturity and presents the topics you feel they’re ready for. Also, it will help when you talk with them about the information.
No matter how careful we are, kids can pick up misinformation from their peers. They may hear something that will cause them to be ashamed, embarrassed, and fearful about this naturally occurring change in their bodies. It’s important to talk about the changes ahead of time, not all of the information they get will come from reliable sources. My mother did not tell me about menstruation, and when it happened, I was convinced I was dying. Because I felt so scared and unprepared myself, I decided to make sure my daughter had a better experience,
Giving kids the right information can help them understand, appreciate, and respect themselves and others. There are some interesting books that can help parents and children learn about all these changes. After reading several books, I noticed that there really is no “one” book that’s right for everyone. None of them were perfect, but they were good enough to get the conversation started and give them the facts they need. The list below is a great place to start.
Amazing You: Getting Smart About Your Private Parts
by Gail Saltz (Author), Lynne Cravath (Author), Lynne Avril Cravath (Illustrator)
This is a book for younger kids about the differences between girls and boy’s bodies. It has great age-appropriate information about anatomy and reproduction without going into too much detail.
Celebrate Your Body (and Its Changes, Too!): The Ultimate Puberty Book for Girls
by Sonya Renee Taylor (Author), Bianca I. Laureano (Foreword)
Puberty can be an uncertain time. This book goes over a lot of the questions your child may have as their body continues to change. It offers a great message of body positivity, good advice and medically accurate information all written in a way that will appeal to young girls.
This is my number one pick for a girl’s intro to puberty. It’s wonderfully encouraging, filled with great information without being too advanced. It really helps girls understand their bodies as they continue to grow.
The Care and Keeping of You: The Body Book for Younger Girls, (American Girl Library)
by Valorie Schaefer (Author), Josee Masse (Illustrator)
This is another go-to book for me. I have given this as a gift to all of my nieces when they were tweens, and now I’ll be giving it to my daughter.
It’s written in an easy to understand and humorous way with fun illustrations. I really like this book, but I did read some negative reviews from parents who didn’t like that the author covers information about eating disorders or girls being embarrassed about the changes and differences in their bodies. I actually found it a helpful way to approach those subjects. I wanted my child to be aware of things she may hear about and then talk to her about why some people have these issues. I think it will help her to talk about what she’s feeling and to bring home the message that she can talk to me about anything.
The Care and Keeping of You 2: The Body Book for Older Girls
by Cara Natterson (Author), Josee Masse (Illustrator)
This book is more advanced than the first one. It’s meant for older girls, I’d say 14 +, but it’s rated for 8-11. The information is more detailed than in the first book and covers more sensitive topics. It’s a great book but one that needs to be read by parents first to be sure your daughter is ready for it.
Guy Stuff: The Body Book for Boys
by Cara Natterson (Author), Micah Player (Illustrator)
This is an upbeat and fun book that goes over all the changes that will be coming up during puberty. I love that this is from the American Girls publisher of The Care and Keeping of You books for girls.
The Body Book for Boys takes care of all the scientific information and explains puberty and the changes it brings very well. The author inserts a bit of humor to lighten things up, and there are some funny drawings as well. The book goes over how to take care of your body, the changes you will see and makes sure the boys know that everyone develops at a different rate. There really isn’t any talk about sex or sexuality, which I love because I just really needed to focus on the puberty portion of development right now.
Guyology: Just the Facts: A Guy’s Guide to Growing Up
by Melisa Holmes, Trish Hutchison
A great resource for younger boys. It goes over the facts about puberty and what changes they will notice. I liked that it did not go into sex since my son is only 10. I had a hard time finding a good book for younger boys but this one was great.
The Boys Body Book
by Dunham RN BSN, Kelli (Author)
This is a great resource, but it’s definitely a book parents will want to read first. Depending on the age of your child there may be some subjects you’d like to wait to introduce.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Lisa spent a decade traveling the world for her work before realizing her dream was to create art and write. She now lives in Chicopee, MA with her husband and two children where she homeschooled her kids for the early grades. Lisa has a real passion for books, especially children’s literature, collecting children’s books since the age of fifteen. She is now working on her first children’s book.
Great recommendation! Thank you, Sara.
Thanks for encouraging people to have these conversations. It’s so important! For a non-gendered approach (whether your kid identifies as a binary gender or not) check out Sex Is a Funny Word by Cory Silverberg. https://www.corysilverberg.com/sex-is-a-funny-word