What Does Dead Mean?
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What Does Dead Mean? : A Book for Young Children to Help Explain Death and Dying

By (author) Caroline Jay , By (author) Jenni Thomas , Illustrated by Unity Joy Dale

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What Does Dead Mean? is a beautifully illustrated book that guides children gently through 17 of the 'big' questions they often ask about death and dying. Questions such as 'Is being dead like sleeping?', 'Why do people have to die?' and 'Where do dead people go?' are answered simply, truthfully and clearly to help adults explain to children what happens when someone dies. Prompts encourage children to explore the concepts by talking about, drawing or painting what they think or feel about the questions and answers. Suitable for children aged 4+, this is an ideal book for parents and carers to read with their children, as well as teachers, therapists and counsellors working with young children.

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  • Hardback | 32 pages
  • 214 x 214 x 16mm | 300g
  • 31 Oct 2012
  • JESSICA KINGSLEY PUBLISHERS
  • London
  • English
  • 27 colour illustrations
  • 1849053553
  • 9781849053556
  • 138,429

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Author Information

Caroline Jay founded and runs the Seeds of Hope Children's Garden, a national charity which aims to promote the use of nature in helping children manage loss. For twelve years she ran a SANDS (Stillbirth and Neonatal Death Society) group, supporting families who have lost babies. Jenni Thomas OBE is widely recognised in the UK as a leading authority in grief support and education. She founded Child Bereavement UK (formerly the Child Bereavement Charity), and is now Patron of the Angus Lawson Memorial Trust and Rosie's Rainbow Fund. She has over 40 years' experience supporting grieving families and children.

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Review quote

This practical book is designed to help parents and carers answer some of the difficult questions that children often ask after someone has died. It also gives children the opportunity to explore and discuss their own thoughts and feelings about death, with a caring and supportive adult... This book uses gentle illustrations and easy to read text... A helpful list of websites and organisations offer additional support for children and their families. -- Youth in Mind Honest, gentle and frank, this book doesn't shy away from difficult areas or try to mask the truth... A reassuring book for young child and adults to share, offering real answers and ways to work through grief, as well as a list of bereavement websites. -- School Librarian Death is never easy, but looking at this book together might help everyone understand and release their emotions and so move along a path of coping with what has happened. -- Juno This is an excellent and beautifully produced book on the general subject of death, aimed precisely at very young children. -- Healthy Books This would be a useful book to have tucked away on the shelf in the hospice, to be loaned out from time to time. -- IAHPC Newsletter Children's questions are a window to their souls and a mirror to their inner thoughts and feelings. This important book allows caring adults to acknowledge and explore these questions with children in a sensitive and informed way. I highly recommend What Does Dead Mean? for anyone who aspires to create a meaningful dialogue with children about death. -- Linda Goldman, author of Children Also Grieve and Life and Loss: A Guide to Helping Bereaved Children At last a book that really answers the questions or fears a child may have about death. I would recommend this to any parent who, like me, wonders how they will support their child through the death of a loved family member, friend, or even pet. I will have it waiting on our shelf and hope that schools will snap it up as a fantastic 'information' book for teachers to use and children to access in the school library. -- Gabby Hails-Smith, parent

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