4 Must-Have Books to Explain Military Life to Your Young Kids

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Military life is hard enough to navigate as an adult. Now, imagine what it’s like for a child? Frequent moves. Long-term separations. And, of course… endless goodbyes. No wonder over fifty percent of service member families say their kids have experienced separation anxiety, worry, and sleep issues. But, what if there was something that could help?

There is, and you can start doing it today.

Books are our secret sauce here at Blue Star Families. There are lots of mamas on our staff who use books all the time to illustrate the good, bad, and funny parts of military life. Through books, we’ve seen a decrease in behavioral issues tied to deployments and moves, and an increase in better sleep; probably because relatable stories help kids reduce their fear-of-the-unknown and therefore ease their worry. Books are also a great way to snuggle before bed and bond with your little… which we know they love to do with you!

Want to give it a try? Here are four must-have books to get you started:

  1. America: A Patriotic PrimerWritten to explain the history of the United States of America easily. It’s a brilliant way to discuss with your military kid(s) why we honor and cherish our freedom and illuminate the importance of the Armed Forces. 
  2. H is for Honor: A Military AlphabetWritten by the son of a service member, this book explains the branches of the Armed Service and highlights the honor, privilege, and sacrifice military families make. It covers all aspects of military life from lighter topics like the Army/Navy football rivalry to more difficult subjects like frequent moves. It’s the perfect introduction to service and country.
        
  3. Hero Dad or Hero MomSometimes it’s hard for kids to grasp why their dad/mom leaves for extended periods of time. Comparing military expertise to superhero abilities helps kids better understand that their parent’s work is important and explains why they make our world a better place to live. A short and sweet read; perfect for when dad/mom is home or away.  
  4. Don’t Forget, God Bless Our TroopsThis is a story written by Second Lady Jill Biden through the eyes of a child. It’s a beautiful synopsis of what deployment looks like and the emotions involved in missing someone you love. Throughout the story, you’ll see the unique way Natalie, the main character, stays connected to her dad and counts down to his homecoming.

And don’t forget…

Thanks to Sleep Number, we’re giving away 12 Sleep Number SleepIQ® Kids Beds as part of our #GoodNightMilKid series this fall! Yes, you read that right… 12 smart-beds will be given to 12 military families now through November 15!!  

SleepIQ Kids bed systems track breathing, heart rate and movement, and then assigns a sleep quality score for each night’s sleep. The next
morning, check out the sleep dashboard to see your kiddo’s results. The bed also adjusts and grows with your kid. You can change the firmness, so it’s always comfortable and supportive – even when they grow four inches overnight.

Enter the Sleep Number #GoodNightMilKid sweepstakes here.

You can enter as many times as you’d like from Oct. 15 to Nov. 15. Follow along on Blue Star Families’ Facebook and Instagram where we’ll share sleep resources and support all month long. We will announce the 12 winners at the end of the campaign via email. Enter here!

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Joanna Guldin