Feel-good accessible picture books to inspire empathy and friendship for blind children - News - Living Paintings

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Feel-good accessible picture books to inspire empathy and friendship for blind children

4th June 2024

This is a tactile image from the book Well done, Little bear. This image shows a larger yellow bear smiling and reaching out for smaller smiling yellow bear.

Making friends and understanding others is a skill we all want to ingrain on the youngsters in our care. Picture books are a fantastic and useful way to talk to children about the importance of kindness, sharing and empathy with others. Luckily, with Living Paintings accessible picture books, blind children don’t need to miss out on these stories.

Stories are a powerful way to share important life-lessons with children – and there’s none more important than showing kindness to others. Empathy Day on 6th June is a time to for children, families and schools to celebrate the power of empathy to create a better world – shining a light on the vital role books and stories play in raising a generation where empathy is put into action. Isn’t that exactly what we need for the future?

Blind and visually impaired children shouldn’t have to miss out on the full experience, benefits and learning that come from stories. That’s why we’ve spent years adapting best-selling picture books focusing on kindness and empathy into accessible versions that can be explored through touch and sound.

In our latest impact report – 100% of our members benefited from more shared experiences with sighted friends, families and peers, and 96% showed a positive change in their confidence in making friends with others.

To celebrate Empathy Day, we’re shining a light on some of our Touch to See picture books in our collection that can help blind and visually impaired youngsters in your care explore and learn about the world of emotions.

Together, let’s make Empathy Day everyday…

This is a tactile image from Misery Moo. It is showing a large smiling black and white cow and a small white duck.

Misery Moo

Written by Jeanne Willis

Illustrated by Tony Ross

EYFS & Key Stage 1

Once, there was a cow who was feeling miserable and a lamb who made constant efforts to uplift her spirits. Despite the lamb’s attempts, the cow couldn’t be comforted. Realising how worried Lamb was, Cow decided to give him the ultimate birthday gift – a heartfelt smile.

This is a tactile image from the book A Superhero Like You. In this image there is a little boy with a doctor outfit on with a blue cape. Next to him is a man who is a real doctor who has a red cape. They both have their hands on their hips in a superhero like style.

A Superhero Like you

Written by Dr Ranj Singh

Illustrated by Liam Darcy

EYFS & Key Stage 1

Award-winning TV presenter and NHS paediatrician Dr. Ranj Singh celebrates key workers’ contributions. The story features Lily, a character aspiring to be a superhero like key workers. She encounters real-life heroes such as doctors, teachers, and carers, showcasing their superpowers of kindness and compassion.


This is a tactile image from the book My beautiful voice. This image shows a young child wearing a orange spotted jumper, they're smiling and looking up a flying blue bird.

My Beautiful Voice

Written by Joseph Coelho

Illustrated by Allison Colpoys

EYFS & Key Stage 1

A moving, lyrical picture book about a child unlocking the power of their own voice through poetry, as a young girl overcomes her anxiety and finds confidence with the support of an enchanting and magical teacher.

Audio guide comes from BAFTA award-winning actress Sophie Okonedo.

  • This is a picture of a young girl feeling a tactile image from the book Superworm.


Written by Julia Donaldson

Illustrated by Axel Scheffler

EYFS & Key Stage 1

A modern classic, Superworm stands out as a one-of-a-kind hero, ever willing to aid other animals and insects by lending a helping hand to others. When Superworm is captured, his kindness is repayed as those he has helped in the past come together to rescue him.  Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler’s story is brought to life through vibrant illustrations and a funny rhyming story that has a powerful message about supporting friends.

Actress Bessie Carter lends her voice for our audio description.


This is a tactile image from the book The Elephant Tree. This image shows a young child in red and green hat. coat, trousers and boots. Behind them is a small elephant which is being lead by the child. Both of them are smiling.

The Elephant Tree

Written by Penny Dale

This heartfelt book focuses on working together and supporting your friends. Together, two friends embark on a search for a very special ‘elephant tree’ for their stuffed toy elephant. Along the way, they encounter various trees  but none are quite right for their favourite toy. With a spark of imagination, they craft their own tree using snow, broken branches, and pieces of woolly clothing and soon Elephant is happy and settled in their handmade tree.


This is a tactile image from the book Well done, Little bear. This image shows a larger yellow bear smiling and reaching out for smaller smiling yellow bear.

Well done, Little Bear

Written by Martin Waddell

Illustrated by Barbara Firth


This charming tale illustrates the importance of motivating and supporting the people around you. Little Bear is eager to go on an adventure, climbing Bear Rock and jumping among the branches of old trees. Big Bear closely observes, offering supportive words. When Little Bear falls into the stream, Big Bear is there with a comforting hug.

More emotions to explore

A mobile phone sitting on a wooden table top and wrapped in earphones displays the Living Paintings website.


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