In Hoboken, there seem to be two seasons: the school year and moving away. Parents with mobile jobs; families that transfer to the New York area from another city; and a latent desire for the suburban house of a family’s dreams may all contribute to “moving house,” as some people say. However, a big change like moving can be difficult for young children. Leaving behind friends, familiar streets, and accustomed routines are strong shocks to the system of little ones.
The Hoboken Library has many books to help children understand the emotions they are experiencing, and to anticipate what living in a new place will feel like. There are actually books for the whole range of ages, but to limit this list, I’ve focused on picture books.
If you’re on your way to someplace wonderful, we wish you well but we will miss you at the library.
Herman’s Letter, by Tom Percival.
Herman, the bear, and Henry, the raccoon, are best friends. Henry, however, is moving far away. How can they keep their friendship when they won’t live near to each other? The two animals decide to become pen pals, but they find that staying in touch by letter is harder than they expected.
Peanut Butter & Cupcake, by Terry Border.
Peanut Butter has moved to a new town and needs to make new friends. The other foods are too busy to play soccer with him. Then he meets Cupcake who is just the right person to share a pick-up game of ball.
Ian Is Moving, by Pauline Oud.
After packing her favorite toys and saying good bye to his old house, Ian is ready to move. When he gets to his new house, he finds all kinds of surprises awaiting him.
I Want to Go Home!, by Tony Ross.
Little Princess and the Royal family are moving to a new castle. It should be an exciting experience, but Little Princess finds that she is very lonely for her old bedroom.
Alexander, Who’s Not (Do You Hear Me? I Mean It!) Going to Move, by Judith Viorst.
Alexander is having another horrible, no-good day when his parents tell him that they are moving. Alexander gets very angry and refuses to move, especially since it means leaving his special friends and the places he loves.
Dream Friends, by You Byun.
Melanie has moved to a new place and has trouble finding friends. To deal with the disruption, Melanie retreats to a fantasy world. In her imagination, she goes on great adventures and finds many new friends.
Ella the Elegant Elephant, by Camelo D’Amico.
Ella is starting a new school in a new town and needs confidence to be the new kid. She borrows her grandmother’s “good luck” hat, only to find that the other children in her school think that it is funny looking and make fun of her.
Bad Bye, Good Bye, by Deborah Underwood.
A very simple and straightforward book in rhyme that follows a family as they move to a new town.
Bella and Stella Come Home, by Anika Denise.
A little girl tries to reassure her favorite doll (and herself) that moving to a new place will be a good experience for them, both.
One of Us, by Peggy Moss.
Roberta finds lots of potential friends at her new school, but no one is exactly right. Then she learns that people can become friends even if they are very different.
When Edgar Met Cecil, by Kevin Luthardt.
Edgar the Robot is unhappy in his new town until he meets a very friendly alien creature named Cecil.
Tim’s Big Move, by Anke Wagner.
Pico is a stuffed dog who lives with a small child. When the pair finds out that they are moving, Pico is concerned that he won’t like a new place to live. His child reassures him that everything will be fine in their new home as long as they have each other.
We’re Moving, by Heather Maisner.
Amy and her family move to a new house and they must put some effort into making it feel like home.
Dear Panda, by Miriam Latimer.
Little Florence misses her friends when she moves and tries to make new friends by writing to the panda in the zoo, next door. Making friends with the panda leads to her meeting another panda-loving child who turns out to be a real friend for her.
On Meadowview Street, by Henry Cole.
What makes a house a home? For Caroline and her family, it is a new garden. They work to make their garden grow which attracts birds and animals and makes Meadowview Street a lot more like its name.
I Like Where I Am, by Jessica Harper.
A six year old child is sad about moving but finds happiness in his new home in this delightful rhyming book.
Where’s Jamela?, by Niki Daly.
Mama gets a new job and buys a new house for her family. Everyone is delighted about it except Jamela who likes her old house just fine.
The Red Boat, by Hannah Cumming.
When Posy and her dog, George, move to a new home they are unhappy with the change. Then they find a magical red boat that takes them on great adventures and helps them accept the changes in their lives.
Sunday Chutney, by Aaron Blabey.
Sunday’s family moves, not just from town to town, but all around the world, so she becomes an expert on developing the coping skills she needs to always be the new girl in class.
The New Arrival, by Vanya Nastanlieva.
Sam, the adorable hedgehog, has moved to a new home in a new forest. However, he needs new friends. Where will he find them, in such an unfamiliar place?
All of these titles, and a wide variety of titles about moving for older children, are available At the Hoboken Library and in other BCCLS libraries. By the way, when you settle in your new home, don’t forget to get your family new library cards. It’s a great way to get to know about activities in your new home.
-Written by Lois Rubin Gross, Senior Children’s Librarian