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Books to share with new big siblings

Welcoming a new baby to a family is an exciting and joyous occasion, but for an older sibling it can be confusing. New babies sleep and cry a lot, and they sure take up a lot of their parents’ time! Setting expectations and preparing a child for the arrival of a sibling can help to smooth the transition.

Toddlers and young children may have lots of questions about the new baby. Carefully chosen books can help them express their joy, alleviate fears and open up conversation with a child who may not yet have words to explain their feelings.

There are many books about welcoming a new baby to the family and it is important to find the right ones for your child. Some answer big questions in age-appropriate ways, while others focus on the special bond that siblings share. Many will remind older siblings just how important and loved they are. No matter which book you’re looking for, your new favorite is sure to be on our list!


Waiting for Baby by Rachel Fuller

This story is told through gentle illustrations that share with toddlers and very young children what it means to be expecting a new baby. It will promote conversation with children aged one to four who may not have the vocabulary to understand and express what is happening. 


I’m a Big Sister / I’m a Big Brother by Joanna Cole

This loving and reassuring book tells the story of a new baby arriving through the eyes of an older sibling. This simple story explains the good things about being an older sibling and reminds new sisters and brothers that they are loved. This book will be most enjoyed by children aged one to four.


You Were the First by Patricia MacLachlan

This book is geared towards a first child and carries a reminiscent tone about when they were a baby. This story reassures a young child that they are loved and have a secure place in the family, helping to prepare them for the arrival of a sibling. It is recommended for a child aged three to six. It is also suitable for families with adopted children.


The Baby Tree by Sophie Blackall

A young boy is told a baby sibling will be welcomed to their family soon. He asks the babysitter, mail carrier, school teacher, and his grandfather where babies come from. Each tells him a story that is sillier and different from the last. Finally the child asks his parents, who take the time to explain in an age appropriate way. This book is suggested for curious children aged four and older.


How to Welcome a New Baby by Jean Reagan

This heartwarming story teaches children what they need to know about the baby’s first year of life and their new role as an older sibling. Older children reading this book will appreciate learning that they can help out. The whimsical illustrations in this book hold details that complement the narrative and will be appreciated by children aged five and older.


Krista is a freelance writer and homeschooling mom of two kids.  She is a former librarian who loves to jump rope, drink tea and share books with family and friends.


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