One of the main ways I learned growing up was through books. Whether it was traveling to another place or time or learning about different groups of people, books helped me make sense of parts of the world I didn’t understand. It makes perfect sense that books can work the same way for military kids and their lifestyle. There are a lot of books for military kids out there and I collected a few of my favorites in honor of the Month of the Military Child.
Night Catch has extremely positive online reviews and beautiful illustrations. The story follows a little boy who plays a nightly game of catch with his deployed dad thanks to the North Star. I think it does a great job reminding little ones that even if daddy isn’t physically present, he’s still thinking of them.
I included Paper Hug because of how neatly it ties into having kids help with care packages. You can read the book with your little one and then work to create your own paper hug to send in your next care package.
I Miss You! is more of an activity book than a storybook and is probably for slightly older children. I think it would be great for the soon-to-be deployed parent and child to go through it together prior to the deployment. It will be a good conversation starter, especially for children who can’t quite express their concerns yet.
Most books for military kids deal with a deployed father, but My Military Mom focuses on another version of a military family and I really like that. All too often, we forget that those at home may include a dad instead of a mom. If this book fits your family’s situation, I definitely recommend it.
I had to include one about a Navy family and Red, White and Blue Good-Bye is just that. I like that the little girl is feisty and tries to hide her dad’s boots in order to keep him home. Those little touches make the book and characters more relatable to children who may very well try the same thing.
H is for Honor is last on my list of books for military kids, but that doesn’t mean it’s my least favorite. The illustrations are gorgeous and the book has a lot of information in it. It’s probably a bit long for little kids; it’s recommended for grades 1-4, but I would say it’s probably better for grades 3-5, depending on your kid’s attention span. I like that it covers more topics than just deployment and incorporates all the branches so there’s something for everyone.
Books for military kids may not cover every unknown of the military lifestyle, but they can go a long way to getting the conversation started, especially when they’re about difficult topics. Do you have any favorite books for military kids? Share them in the comments!