In this heartfelt book, Doris Stickney addresses one of life’s most profound questions: how to explain death to young children. When faced with the loss of a five-year-old friend, Stickney weaves a gentle and meaningful fable. The story revolves around a small colony of water bugs living happily beneath the surface of a quiet pond. Occasionally, one of these water bugs climbs up a lily stalk and disappears from sight, never to return. Those left behind are left with the mystery of what has become of their departed friend.
“Water Bugs and Dragonflies” offers a poignant and accessible way to discuss death with children. Through the allegory of water bugs transforming into dragonflies, Stickney provides comfort and understanding. The book beautifully captures the delicate balance between life and loss, leaving readers with a sense of hope and transformation.
Illustrated by the talented artist Robyn Henderson Nordstrom of Cleveland, Ohio, this full-color edition brings the story to life with delightful and evocative illustrations. Whether read aloud or explored independently, “Water Bugs and Dragonflies” is a timeless resource for parents, educators, and caregivers seeking to navigate conversations about mortality with young hearts.
Title: Water Bugs and Dragonflies: Explaining Death to Young Children
Author: Doris Stickney
Illustrator: Robyn Henderson Nordstrom
Publication Date: 1982
Publisher: The Pilgrim Press
Format: Full-color print book
Genre: Children’s literature, Fable
Reading Age: 3 - 8 years
Print Length: 16 pages