October is Anti-Bullying Month. While it’s unfortunate that there’s a need to devote a month to bullying awareness, on the positive side there are some really wonderful books for kids of all ages that have an anti-bullying message. For the youngest children, picturebooks and early readers can be a helpful way to open up a dialog with young children about bullying and resolving conflicts. Some of our recommendations:
- Lucy and the Bully by Claire Alexander. When a mean classmate in preschool wrecks Lucy’s artwork, she discovers that they can be friends once he stops being jealous of her.
- Bully Trouble by Joanna Cole. Arlo and Robby, finding themselves the victims of a neighborhood bully, work out a red-hot scheme for discouraging him.
- The Meanest Thing to Say by Bill Cosby. When a new boy in his second grade class tries to get the other students to play a game that involves saying the meanest things possible to one another, Little Bill shows him a better way to make friends.
- Llama Llama and the Bully Goat by Anna Dewdney. Following their teacher’s lead, Llama Llama speaks to Gilroy Goat and tells him he should not act like a bully on the playground.
- Chrysanthemum by Kevin Henkes. Chrysanthemum loves her name, until she starts going to school and the other children make fun of it.
- Pinky and Rex and the Bully by James Howe. Pinky learns the importance of identity as he defends his favorite color, pink, and his friendship with a girl, Rex, from the neighborhood bully.
- Chester Raccoon and the Big Bad Bully by Audrey Penn. When Chester tells his mother about the school bully, she asks him to gather his friends to hear a story about getting along with people who are prickly.
- Bully by Laura Vaccaro Seeger. Interacting with other animals in mean-spirited ways, a little bull calls names and behaves in an intimidating manner until his bullying behavior is brought to his attention.
- Stop Picking on Me : a First Look at Bullying by Pat Thomas. This approachable picture book explores the difficult issue of bullying in reassuringly simple terms. The fears, worries, and questions surrounding this upsetting experience are made accessible to young children.
- You’re Mean, Lily Jean! by Frieda Wishinsky. Sisters Carly and Sandy have always played together, but when Lily moves in next door she only wants to play with Sandy, and insists that if Carly joins them she must be a baby, or a cow, or a dog.
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