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13 Children’s Books About Disabilities 

13 books about disabilities pin

Are you looking for children’s books that provide insight and understanding about various disabilities? I feel that the best way to help our children learn compassion and understanding is by talking to them about various disabilities and sharing stories to help them understand.

We have compiled a round up of various books that we have come across that share insight about children with various disabilities. We have not personally read them all, but they were all highly recommended.

My Brother Sammy is Special by by Becky Edwards

 In this book Sammy has autism and his brother gets frustrated that he can’t always play with him because he doesn’t like the same things he does and wants a brother more like him. But by the end of the book the older brother realizes that he should not demand everything on his own terms and that Sammy’s way of doing things may not be so bad after all. Grades K–3.

Just Because by Rebecca Elliott

 This is a heartwarming picture book about being perfectly loved, no matter what. The younger brother goes on to describe all of the fun he has with his big sister who he loves so much and delights in telling us all about the fun things they do together. As the books goes on he realizes his sister has special needs and he accepts this as he does, all the wonderful things about her. Ages 4-8.

My Brother Charlie by Holly Robinson Peete

In this book,Charlie has autism and it goes on to talk about how his brain works in a special way and it’s harder for him to make friends. His big sister tells us, for everything that Charlie can’t do well, there are plenty more things that he’s good at. She goes on to tell us everything he is good at and shows a wonderful relationship between siblings. Grades  K–3.

Molly the Pony: A True Story by Pam Kaster

This book is about Molly the pony and shares the experiences she went through when she was rescued after Hurrican Katrina and her new ling on a farm with new animal friends. A dog at the farm attacks her and her front leg is injured badly and she undergoes amputation of her front leg which is a rare surgery for horses. She then relearns how to walk and embarks on this new mission in life. Grades K-3.

Knockin’ on Wood: Starring Peg Leg Bates by Lynne Barasch

This is an inspirational biography of Clayton -Peg Leg- Bates (1907-1998), an African American man who over came the hardship of losing a leg at age 12 and went on to become a world-renowned tap dancer. Grades K-3.

Rainbow Joe and Me by Maria Diaz Strom

This book talks about how Eloise learns a new way to see the world through her friend Rainbow Joe who is blind. He teaches her how he imagines and mixes colors. Eloise learns a whole new way to see the world. Grades K-3.

Different, Not Less: A Children’s Book About Autism by Dan Gibbons

This is a fantastic book talking about how children with autism can do amazing, incredible things!  This book can be used to teach your child about Autism Spectrum Disorder. The poem in the book was written by a father of a son with ASD. This book will give you an opportunity to explain the diagnosis to your child when you believe they are able to understand. Each page also has a hidden word. Red letters mixed in with the black letters spell uplifting words for those diagnosed with autism. Can your child find them? Grades K-3.

Silent Star: the Story of Deaf Major Leaguer William Hoy by Bill Wise

This book shares the story of William Hoy and how he loved baseball. Growing up in the 1860s and ’70s, he dreamed of one day playing in the major leagues. A far-off fantasy for many boys, fulfilling this dream was even more of a long shot for William, who was deaf. Age Range: 6 – 11 years.

The Pirate of Kindergarten by George Ella Lyon

This book shares the experiences of a child in kindergarten who has double vision and the strugggles she goes through with double vision. She then starts to wear a patch to help her with her vision and she becomes the pirate of kindergarten. With the help of her patch she is now able to read and cut! Age Range: 4-8 years. 

Thank You, Mr. Falker by Patricia Polacco

This book does a wonderful job of explaining and showing how a teacher can help a child overcome dyslexia and helps her learn to read. This can be a great book for a child that has difficulty reading or for a teacher who has made a difference in a child’s life. Age Range: 5-8 years.

I Can Understand by Aviva M. Cantor

This book was inspired by the relationship of the authors older brother who had disabilities. Whenever children would see her brother they would ask why he looked different and her mother would respond, “He can’t talk, but he can understand.” This inspired her to write a book to help children have a better understanding of people with special needs. Through this book Joey is the narrator and gets the opportunity to speak for himself and the reader gets to learn his perspective.  This book lets others benefit from all that the author’s brother has taught her about acceptance, humanity, and unconditional love. Grades K-3.

Mrs. Gorski, I Think I Have The Wiggle Fidgets by Barbara Esham

This book describes what it is like for kids in class who need to wiggle and move and how they can feel embarrassed by these behaviors. It provides some great techniques to help with these behaviors in the classroom and is very highly recommended. Age Range: 6 and up.

Dana Also Deserves a Playground by Yael Manor

This story aims to shed light, on the discrimination against disabled children in the playgrounds. It provides some of the struggles these children face on the play ground and how we can create a more inclusive play ground. Grades K-3.

We hope this list can provide you with a variety of stores to share with your children to help us provide a world with acceptance and understanding. Do you have a favorite book about disabilities that you would like us to add to this list? Please let us know what stories you like!

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