Sunday, January 22, 2012

American Girl Books: A Smart Girl's Guide

As parents, we often find ourselves confronted with situations that can be challenging to explain to our young daughters.  I recently struggled to find the right words to explain to my 7 year old daughter when she was concerned about a few mild social issues.  Thankfully, I was able to reference a scenario in one of her American Girl books.  Perhaps it's the teacher in me to turn to a 'mentor text.'  -- but, if it works...

As girls begin to progress through different grade levels, the social scenarios begin to become more significant in volume and vary by circumstance: who is friends with who... or who isn't friends with who, who was or wasn't invited to what party, or any other number of situations that may become present.

Thankfully, we've come across the American Girl Book series, which speaks in a manner that a young girl can understand but still gets to the heart of the issues. 

You can view the American Girl website here.

Below are some of Riley's personal favorites selections:

A Smart Girl's Guide to Manners (American Girl) (American Girl Library)

A Smart Girl's Guide to Friendship Troubles

Oh, Brother... Oh, Sister (American Girl)

What Would You Do? (American Girl)

Stand Up for Yourself and Your Friends: Dealing with Bullies and Bossiness and Finding a Better Way

Another great feature of this series is that the books continue to grow with your baby girl. 
Here are a couple selections for those who have a daughter approaching middle school age.

A Smart Girl's Guide to Starting Middle School (American Girl) (American Girl Library)

A Smart Girl's Guide to Money (American Girl) (American Girl Library

A Smart Girl's Guide to Boys (American Girl) (American Girl Library)

I'm sure that anybody with a young daughter will find some great selections here.  The first time I went to their website, I went just for one book, and I ordered 5.  I could have probably ordered about ten more just on looks alone without ever reading one.  The concepts were exactly what I was looking for.   

When we got them home, we found the best part was that my daughter loved the books, understood the advice, and could apply the material to every day situations.  Most of the selections are affordable--under $10, full of pictures and easily applied strategies for being a better you.  

These are a must have for anyone with daughter - especially those who have daughters who are headed into the tween or pre-tween years.

Disclosure: This blog is a member of Amazon Associates. 


  1. Growing up I LOVED the American Girl Books (both the historical stories and the new "life" books like you mentioned here). I teach middle school girls, at a Catholic school, and I have found that the American Girl books are so helpful! They address important topics in an engaging manner and I never have to worry about anything controversial in the books that would upset the parents at my school. I try to buy them on Amazon or at yard sales. WHenever I get a new one, my girls fight over them!
    To The Square Inch

  2. My daughter grew up with the historical American Girl dolls, and all the books that went with them. Her favorite was Molly, and she still, as a college student, loves that time period in history. I still have her collection of books, which I share with my students.

    Sally from ElementaryMatters

  3. Awesome feedback Kate and Sally. Thanks so much for sharing.

    I am loving these books, too. They give Riley and I something to discuss on the way to school each day, too. She loves sharing her information and seeing if I knew certain 'social graces.' It's cute.

    Thanks again,