Children’s books that include children whose parents are in prison are very important to support children in similar situations and build empathy among other children.

When I first started teaching 27 years ago, students with my parents in prison…I did not support them by providing them with books about character experiences.I don’t know that I can help other students develop empathy by sharing books with others all My student is about imprisoned parents.

Now I know better.

Millions of children have parents or prisons or prisons.

Here are picture books and chapters/intermediate books, including parents in prison.

I now know that it is important to include these books in all classrooms and libraries, so I hope this list of books can help you support your children in your life.

Children’s books about children whose parents are in prison

Knocking on the door: My dad’s dream of me
By Daniel Beaty, illustration by Bryan Collier (picture book)
In this story, the love between father and son is beautiful. Every morning, his father knocks on the boy’s door and the boy pretends to be asleep. But one day, my father was away. And he will not come back. The boy missed his father at all times of the day, such as making scrambled eggs and helping with homework. So he wrote a letter to his father. The letter his father wrote to him from prison was full of words of wisdom and love. “I will no longer knock on your door there, so you must learn to knock for yourself. Knock on the door I can’t open.“It’s heartbreaking, beautiful, and full of hope.

Children's books about children whose parents are in prison
Milo imagined the world Matt de la Pena, illustration by Christian Robbie (picture book)
Milo rode the subway with his sister, and his anxiety made him feel like a crumbling glass of soda, even though it was a weekly journey. He observes the people around him and draws and writes stories about them in his notebook. When they arrived at the station, he was surprised to see a boy he had noticed before, and a boy in a suit was also lining up in the prison. Milo realized that you can’t tell people’s stories just by their appearance. Then he and his sister started hugging their mother and went to visit her.

The night when Dad went to jail
Melissa Higgins (Melissa Higgins), Wednesday Kowan (picture book) illustration
A little rabbit explained what happened when the police came to arrest his father And how he uses paintings to express his feelings about social workers, visiting fathers, and group therapy before, during, and after. excellent.

The End of the World: A family when the beloved is imprisoned
Becky Birtha, Maja Kastelic illustration (picture book)
This supportive picture book shows Different situations of children whose parents are in prison And allow them to have as many different feelings as possible at the same time… and they are not the only children who have experienced this situation.

From Zoe Washington’s desk
Author: Janae Marks (9-12 years old)
On her 12th birthday, Zoe, a baking girl, found a letter from her imprisoned biological father Marcus. She decided to write back to him, and even dared to ask about his murder in jail-did he really do this? Marcus wrote to Zoe that he was innocent, and he could prove it, which made Zoe seek to find out the truth for herself, even if her parents forbid it. She sought help from her grandmother and her best friend Trevor. You will not be able to let go of this fascinating story with a heroine you can’t help but admire; a story that clarifies social justice on the themes of family, friendship, and love.

Harbour me
Author: Jacqueline Woodson (9-12 years old)
Harbour me Solve some very big problems, including race, immigration, bullying, learning differences, friendship and forgiveness. This story is about six different children with learning differences. They made a connection at a special time for children on Friday afternoon, where they shared their stories, many of which were recorded by Haley with a tape recorder. Even when learning about other children, Hailey is unwilling to share that her own father was in jail for killing her mother in a car accident. When she finally shared, it was great to see other children supporting her. This well-written story is worth discussing because it has a lot of ideas to think about.

All Rise for the Honorable Perry T. Cook Books for children whose parents are in prison
Cheer up for the respected Perry T. Cook
Leslie Connor (9-12 years old)
This book attracted me from the first page and let me know a growth story that is both heartbreaking and hopeful. Perry was loved by his mother and her friends in prison. This is where Perry has lived since he was born eleven years ago. But in an unexpected and unpleasant incident, the stepfather of his best friend, the new district attorney, forced Perry to leave prison. Not only that, but DA also tried to delay Perry’s mother’s parole hearing. Perry discovered the story behind the prisoner’s life and hoped that they could help him reunite with his mother. After you read the last page, this story will stay with you for a long time.

A book with the role of parents in prison
Coyote Illustration by Margarita Engle, Aleksey & Olga Ivanov (9-12 years old)
When Tony’s mother was sent to prison, Tony was sent to the Sierra Nevada to live with an uncle he had never met. Accompanied by him and a rescue dog named Gabe, Tony learned how to track wild animals, was welcomed by the Cowboy Church, and made new friends at the mountain school. Most importantly, his uncle Gabe showed Tony unconditional love-for the first time in his life.

Della’s drug-addicted and insane mother went to jail. After something bad happened… Della and her sister Su Qi were fostered by a woman named Francine. They are not necessarily loved, but this time, they are safe. As Della’s story unfolds, we learn that Su Qi rescued Della from their mother’s boyfriend Clifton. We suspect that Suki was also sexually abused, but we didn’t know it until later in the story after the suicide attempt. When both girls began to receive treatment, Della learned the sometimes effective strategies to relieve anxiety, and hoped that her and Su Qi’s brains would heal from the trauma they experienced. We saw this progress in school, where Della did not slam someone or curse, but instead used her voice to stop a boy who sexually harassed a girl in her class. I suggest that children read with adults, because most children need to open up and discuss the themes and issues in this heartfelt story.

Parents in jail
Ruby outside
Author: Nora Raleigh Baskin (9-12 years old)
Ruby doesn’t want her only new friend to know that her mother is in prison. To make matters worse, Ruby believes that her friend’s family is the reason for her mother’s imprisonment. I found this to be a deliberate growth story about a girl who feels she has two lives-one on the inside and one on the outside, and how she blends the two together. Children will be able to put on Ruby shoes and experience what it feels like to be her.
10 children's books about children whose parents are in prison

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