Below is an annotated list of children's literature for the elementary classroom. The books are organized by the Six Elements of Social Justice Curriculum Design (Picower, 2007). It is based on work by pre-service teachers at Montclair State University. They have read and reviewed these books and provided insights into how they can be used in K-5 settings.
Tuesday, April 23, 2013
Author: Lucia Raatma
Grade Level: 3-5
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This book by Scholastic is essentially an anti-bullying resource made just for kids. It first describes and explains what bullying is and that it can appear in many forms. Then it goes into understanding who tends to be bullied and who the bullies are. Next it becomes a guide for how to respond to bullies and how to stop the pattern of bullying. There is much statsistical data throughout the book as well as pictures to bring the ideas of the text to life and relate it to real-life experiences that unfotratnely all too many children have experienced.
Element 6: Taking Social Action:
Element six of social justice is social action. This book is a great resource for any elementary classroom, as bullying is a very real issue for kids. All kids have experienced bullying in some way, whether as victims, witnesses, or bullies themselves. Therefore, this book shows kids how to take action within their classroom environments and beyond to stop bullying. It shows simple ways in which kids can stand up to bullies and make their classroom a better and safer environment for everyone.
This book would be a great book to intorduce to students in September. It would show students that bullying is not acceptable in the classroom, as well as help students to think of ways to combat bullying around the school, throughout the school year. It gives great examples of how to build stronger bonds of freindshp and kindness as well, which transcend across grade and age. Therefore, this could segue into an activity in which students might write about a time when they experienced bullying in some way (without names as anonymity is key). Then they could do an activity where they could re-write the story to show how someone could have stood up to the bully and explained why his or her actions were wrong. This would ideally get students to think about ways in which they can continue to to take social action against bullying and to hopefully get a better understanding of how bullying affects the victims.