Books for Children in Foster Care
Zachary’s New Home: A Story for Foster and Adopted Children
Blomquist, G.M., Blomquist, P.B. (1991) Zachary’s New Home: A Story for Foster and Adopted Children (Magination Press)
This story is appropriate for young foster children ages 4 through 8. Zachary is a baby kitten. His mama cannot take care of him so he has to go into foster care. The story follows Zachary as he begins his experiences with a family of geese . The hurt, self doubt, and testing young children can experience when placed in new settings are portrayed
Tell Me Again About the Night I was Born
Curtis, Jamie-Lee, (1992) Tell Me Again About the Night I was Born (Joanna Collier Books).
Colorful pictures and whimsical language are used in the telling of this story of a child who finds joy in recurrently hearing about the phone call from the agency that united her with her adoptive parents on the night that she was born. How the union has enriched both the child and parent characters can be used effectively as a conversation starter about real life foster/ adoptive unions. The book is suitable for listening or reading by children at the preschool as well as primary level.
A Mother for Choco
Kasza, K. ( 1992) A Mother for Choco, (Penguin Putnam Group).
A picture book for young readers. Choco, a lonely baby chick with chubby red cheeks has lost his mother. In his search for a caretaker he is rejected by several animals each of whom shares features with him. Eventually he meets and is adopted by as comforting and wise mother bear (already caring for a baby pig, baby hippo and baby alligator– all of whom attest to her affection and love. The story may be perfect in instances of interracial /multicultural adoptions where there is a need to emphasize that caring and sharing are achievable regardless of differences; ethnic or otherwise.
Kids Need to Be Safe: A Book for Children in Foster Care
Nelson, J. (2005) Kids Need to Be Safe: A Book for Children in Foster Care (Free Spirit Publishing).
Geared toward young adults –possibly reluctant readers, this book briefly describes why kids end up in foster and how foster parents try to be supportive.
I Wished for You: An Adoption Tale
Richmond, M. ( 2008) I Wished for You: An Adoption Tale, (Creative Child Magazine.)
This Mom’s Choice Award recipient will be enjoyed by children ages 4 through 8. In the story Barley Bear and his new mama enjoy snuggling up in an easy chair to talk about how they became a family. Answers to many question foster children might raise are dealt with in this story.
Maybe Days: A Book for Children in Foster Care
Wilgocki, J. ,Wright, M. & Geis, A. (2002) Maybe Days: A Book for Children in Foster Care (American Psychological Association (APA))
Recommended for children, ages 4 through 8, this children’s book discusses the people and procedures involved in foster care. Foster parents and their foster childrencan read this book together to stimulate conversation about a variety of frustrations and/or questions a foster child might have.
Byars, B (1988) The Pinballs (Bantam)
A serious story interspersed with humor, the story is about three children whose parents and society cause them to be pitched about like pinballs from onefoster situationto another. The children finally find acceptance by the Masons, caring foster parents who help them release the weight of past disappointments and replace with a sense of trust and love.
Bud, Not Buddy
Curtis, P. (2004) Bud, Not Buddy (Laurel Leaf)
Running away from an abusive foster home Bud–“not Buddy”—Caldwell, a 10 year African American old orphan sets out to find the man he has convinced himself on somewhat flimsy evidence tomay be his father. While his supposed father, a musician andclub owner in Grand Rapids, Michigan,is not very welcoming of a boy who appears claimingto be his son, various members of the club’s his band make him feelathome Bud’s – not Buddy’s adventurestake place in the Depression Era, and is presented with an appropriate mix of comedy and sadness. Children and adults will find this book a fine read that can lead to some worthy conversations.
The Great Gilly Hopkins
Paterson, K. (2004 )The Great Gilly Hopkins (Harper Collins)
Gilly Hopkins is an 11-year old foster child. She has been in with a number of foster families over most of her life but can’t find acceptance from any of them due to her inability to get along. Gilly continuously hopes to get back with her mother, but her longings have a slim chance of being realized. The story centers around her newest foster placement which she disparages as having a “ gross guardian with a freaky kid.” But it is in this placement that she learns how to deal with reality and finds love and acceptance. The winner of several awards including the National Book Award for Children’s Literature and a Newbery Honor, this book provides a captivating read for children ages 9-12.
Lowry, Lois (1993) The Giver (Bantom)
Echoing Brave New World, This Newbery medal winner offers adolescents a science fiction rendition of a futuristic society where strategies for obtaining a utopia (a society where all causes of pain are eliminated and sameness is produced for all individuals) can actually produce the opposite.