Play Therapy Books

Play Therapy Books

Play is something that is magical and incredible, and we can't sing its praises enough. 

Play is the language in which children speak. 

They learn so much by playing every day. 

Whether it is pretend play or toys, it is an amazing tool that therapists also use in their practices when counseling children. 

While toys are also effective counseling tools, they all have their time and place. 

Play therapy books can help your child identify emotions, and even sometimes help to equip them in learning how to deal with them. 

In books, they may find themselves, or a character with which they identify with. 

That can help children find their voice and share their emotions, and that is truly a wonderful thing. 

Plus, books in general help our children with their literacy, so play therapy books are double the fun! 

We have listed some great play therapy books that you can look over and see if it is something that you would like to read to learn more about it! 

Available Play Therapists in Colorado Springs

The Way I Feel

When children just need a word for their feelings, and they cannot find it, this book may be able to help them find and choose the right words to let you know how they are feeling. 

Janan Cain creates a wonderful picture book for children in The Way I Feel, that have big bold words that can teach them all about emotions, and what they are. 

This book is perfect for those in preschool up to three years of age. 

This book is not meant to have any bearing on the feelings of the child, but for just allowing children to just be. 

To allow them to just really feel their emotions. 

A follow-up book, The Way I Act, written by Steve Metzger and illustrated by Cain, it is meant to age with the child, and is for children ages four to nine. 

It helps children who are a little older about behaviors. 

It helps share with the reader some different ways that they could act in certain situations and touches on what consequences are as well. 

Both of these books are great for children on the autism spectrum.

What Should Danny Do? (The Power to Choose Series)

This fun book series follows the main character Danny, a "superhero-in-training," throughout his day. 

He will encounter different scenarios, and what choices they have in them. 

It teaches children that they have the power to choose how they feel. 

What Should Danny Do? by Adir Levy is written in a "choose-your-own-adventure" type of story, so kids have the power to choose how Danny's day is going to turn out. 

There are nine different stories in this book that children can go through and help teach them all about choices. 

Teaching social-emotional skills, it gives children the tools to choose for themselves, as they continue to learn and grow. 

There are currently four books in the What Should Danny Do? series. 

They feature scenarios like school days and vacations. 

Kids will relate to Danny and his daily adventures, and they will enjoy helping him navigate different social-emotional scenarios. 

The Feelings Book

Todd Parr touches on feelings perfectly. The Feelings Book is written for smaller children, who are just learning how to read, this book features bold and bright colors and text that little ones can follow along with. 

This book runs the sometimes hurried gamut of emotions that everyone, especially little ones can feel like. 

The fun characters and shapes will catch their attention and help them learn about feelings and what they are, and that it is okay to feel them. 

Parr has also written over forty other books, helping to inspire and help children. 

B is for Breathe: The ABCs of Coping with Fussy and Frustrating Feelings

Feelings - they can be incredibly frustrating sometimes! This is especially true for our little ones, who do not yet know how to cope with them. 

In B is for Breathe: The ABCs of Coping with Fussy and Frustrating Feelings, Dr. Melissa Munro Boyd, a clinical psychologist teaches children how to deal with these fussy emotions. 

She uses the alphabet to go through different ways that children can learn to recognize their emotions and a technique in which to deal with them. In this book, there are fun and bright illustrations that will capture children's attention and keep it.

Grumpy Monkey

New York Times Bestseller, Grumpy Monkey by Suzanne Lang, this book teaches kids how to just feel their emotions. 

It's a wonderful story about a grumpy monkey that goes on to have a meltdown. 

Along the way, it teaches kids that they are allowed to feel their emotions, and they do not have to suppress them. 

It shows them that everyone is allowed to have a "grumpy" day, including kids. 

The book lets children know that it is okay to feel their emotions and process them. 

With fun illustrations and tons of laughter, this book is a great tool for teaching kids about knowing what they feel and that it is okay to feel it. 


These are only just a few play therapy books that can help your child. 

A great idea is if you see a book that you think is appropriate for your child, ask your child's counselor about it. 

You never know, they may have the book, and if they do not, maybe they will get it to help with your child and future clients! 

You may even want to pick up a copy for yourself at home so you can also help your child along in their counseling journey. 

This list is only meant to serve as an example, as each counselor has different techniques and uses different methods and modalities of therapy, and may use different books. 

But one cannot deny the power of reading with children

They will often open up if they see an emotion that they recognize, and that is why books are such amazing tools in the world of therapy. 


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March 27th, 2023