What if?

Talking with Trees Book 3

What if Children's Book- social emotional learning and character education elementary school aged children

A story that teaches kids to think before they act, building empathy, responsibility and respect.

When he climbed a massive mulberry tree, this young boy didn’t know he was in for a big surprise. This wise, old tree has seen too many kids say and do hurtful things without thinking. So she speaks up and helps the boy and his sister learn to think before they act.

Through captivating illustrations and realistic situations, What if? shows children how their words can hurt others and how their actions can be dangerous or just plain inconsiderate. In the end, the children walk away with a new seed planted...how to ask “What if I do this, what could happen?”. They build empathy and awareness of how to act with more respect and responsibility.

What if on Video

For a limited time, we've made "What if" available on video- FREE.
Let us help with your remote learning challenges with this free video version that includes words and audio so students can read along and listen. See the video here.

Teaching Resources

What if is an excellent book for elementary social emotional learning and character education. This SEL book includes a discussion guide at the end of the book. Free worksheets, lesson plans and more SEL elementary teaching resources are available online, ready to include in your in-person or remote lessons. See teaching resources.

Discussion Guide Teaching Resources
What if Children's Book Interior Page

"A what if seed?" the boy asked. "Do I plant it or eat it?"

"You feel it," the tree answered. "Before you say or do something, feel that seed and remember to ask yourself, 'What if I do this, what could happen?' It'll save you from all sorts of trouble," the tree explained.

Teaching Resources

Grade Level

  • K - 4

SEL / Character Education Topics

  • Self-management, Social Awareness, Positive Relationships
  • Traits: Respect, Responsibility, Empathy

Social Emotional Learning Themes

  • Teaches children about taking responsibility for their actions, and provides and easy technique to help them remember to use self-control.
  • Emphasizes that choices have consequences, building decision making and self-management skills.
  • Emotionally expressive pictures help children build empathy, reading expressions and body language to know how their actions are making other people feel.

What if Downloadable SEL Resources

These are just a few of the elementary social emotional learning resources related to the children's book, What if. Explore our SEL teaching resources catalog for more options.

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Buy The Book

What if is available in print and ebook formats through major distributors. Please choose a link below for the format you need.

Print Book

What if Childrens Social Emotional Learning SEL Book- Print Version
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e Books

What if Childrens Social Emotional Learning SEL Book eBook Versions


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Android / Google:

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Apple Mac / iPad:

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Schools & Libraries

Also available through major book distributors


  • ISBN-13: 978-1500830441
  • ISBN-10: 1500830445
  • e-book: 978-0984905645