Tissywoo and the worry monsters by Trish Donald
Little Pink Dog Books, 2018. ISBN 9780994624943
(Age: 4+) Themes: Depression, Childhood fears. Books with a single issue, written to educate a reader about mental health have been produced in larger numbers in recent years as people have realised that it is not an isolated illness and affects much younger children than once thought. Some wonderful books have emerged that tell a story and reading that story readers develop skills to help them in dealing with a similar situation. Mr Huff (Anna Walker), Big and me (David Miller) and I need a hug (Aaron Blabey) are some that with some subtlety allow children to talk about their fears.
In Tissywoo and the worry monster, Tissywoo is about to go to school for the first time and is not unexpectedly, concerned. She is worried that she will not fit in or find friends and is concerned about her new teacher. Her fears take hold of her and the story details the symptoms she feels: wobbly tummy, loud beating heart and spinning head. She lets the worry monster in. But as soon as she let him in, she starts to try and control what is going on by breathing normally, in and out, controlling her breathing until the monster grows smaller and finally disappears.
This is a neatly resolved book about challenging your fears, and could be used in the supported classroom to allow children to open up about fear and how to control it.