Big Feelings is a children’s book that uses 10 lovable animals and their unique situations to explain and discuss emotions that toddlers and pre-school aged kids routinely come up against. Big Feelings hopes to help little ones understand why they are feeling certain ways, and how to move through those feelings. Opening up a dialogue through the experiences of relatable, fury animal friends is a fun way for kiddos to learn. In this product review, our volunteer reader, Emilie, talks about her experience reading the book (it sounds like multiple times!) to her gaggle of little ones.

If you’d like to learn more about Big Feelings, please check out their website.

1. What is your child’s age?

Emilie M.: My kids are ages are 4, 2 and 6 months

2. Will you read the book to your child again?

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Emilie M.: We love the books! We will read them over and over again! The baby even loved “Baby Feelings”.

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1. After reading Big Feelings with your child, how would you describe emotions to your child?

Emilie M.: I would describe emotions as the way you feel in different situations.  Sometimes it will feel good, sometimes it will feel bad, but we always have ways we feel and are responsible for how we respond to those feelings. It’s a hard thing to explain!!

2. How might reading Big Feelings change the way you talk with your child about his or her feelings?

Emilie M.: I liked the way they used examples of things the animal would be doing when they were feeling the emotion.  For example, when Tommy the turtle can’t climb up the rocks, he gets frustrated.  Using an example of something that would frustrate my kids helped them identify what it meant.  I’m going to try to use more examples when we talk about feelings.

3. Which character was your child’s favorite and why?

Emilie M.: We loved Duke the dog.  My four year old deals with anger more than other emotions so I think he could identify with him wanting to respond by biting.  We also think Duke is the cutest name ever.

4. Were there any emotions in the book that were new for you to discuss with your child?  If so, which ones?

Emilie M.: Because my kids are young, embarrassment hasn’t been something we’ve discussed before. With our oldest about to start preschool, this is one I think will (sadly) be introduced to him as he learns to interact with new kids.  I’m not sure they totally got the idea of being made fun of, but I felt like it was a perfect way to introduce them to it.

5. What did you learn about your child while reading Big Feelings?

Emilie M. I was really surprised at how they could identify the emotions just from the expressions on the animals’ faces.  It is amazing how aware they are.  I would have told you that my kids didn’t really understand or recognize emotions but after seeing them point out how the animals felt as soon as we turned the page, I was proven wrong.  Even our two year old knew how the animals felt.