A moving illustrated book to help children understand that sometimes it's OK to feel sad
Tom Alexander writes stories, draws pictures and makes weird little things out of paper. He lives in London with his wife and cat. His first book My Secret Dog, is also published by Jessica Kingsley Publishers.
Sometimes I Feel Sad' is a charming, simply illustrated, little
book, offering parents and teachers the opportunity to open up a
dialogue with children about these feelings, and enabling
reassurance that they are not alone in their sadness. -- Sarah
Naish, CEO of the National Association of Therapeutic Parents
[This book] makes me happy. And I like the ducks! -- Elijah, age 6
Sometimes I Feel Sad is a small gem. Elegant. Accurate. Evocative. The message is simple yet powerful: there's no quick fix for sad but there are things that might help, and people who care. Small children will relate to this book. Bigger ones will, too. -- Dawn Huebner, PhD, author of 'Outsmarting Worry'
Profound and perfect to help children reflect on sadness as a normal emotion... A really helpful way to get kids to think about feeling sad. The illustrations are gorgeous and relevant to any age. Great resource for a whole class to reflect on sadness and its normal place in all our lives! -- Betsy de Thierry, author of The Simple Guide to Child Trauma and The Simple Guide to Sensitive Boys
The simple pictures are so expressive, so telling of what is going on in the child's mind that the book becomes a model of information and a story at the same time. A wonderful and brilliant evocation of what it feels like to be sad and to discover that it is one of life's inevitabilities. -- Healthybooks
It's not always easy to encourage children to open up about their feelings, and even if they are willing to do so, they can struggle to express themselves, so books can be a big help to both child and adult. Feeling sad is only natural at times, and children should not feel there is anything wrong in feeling sad. This empathetic book, through simple text and expressive line drawings, helps explain to children aged 5+ that they're not alone in feeling this way, and the approach is especially useful for children who struggle to express their feelings. Simple and effective. -- Parents in Touch
Book review by Kate, 6, and Amy, 2.
Kate said, "I like that it says sometimes people feel sad and they've got to cheer up. Some people sometimes feel happy because they've got a happy thing to think about.
"When people feel sad they can read it and it might make them feel better because it's a happy ending. It says at the end 'because it means I'm not alone'. It's nice."
When Mummy asked Kate who she tells when she feels sad, she said, "If a friend is nasty I tell the teacher or one of my family members and after we can solve it. Usually the other child is not mean to me anymore."
Amy listened to Kate reading the book and loved looking at the bold colours. After reading the book, she began to play but got upset and came to Mummy to say, "Mummy, I feel sad!"
So although Amy is very young and often gets frustrated when trying to express her thoughts, she clearly took something away from this book: that children should try to articulate their feelings and find a trusted person to share their sadness with so they don't feel alone - but ultimately, we all feel sad sometimes. Sometimes I Feel Sad is ideal for younger children, especially in an EYFS setting or for children who have difficulty in communicating their feelings. It provides a platform for useful discussion around feelings and how others react to your sadness.