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.

Monday, November 10, 2014

The Juice Box Bully

Authors: Bob Sornson and Maria Dismondy
Illustrator: Kim Shaw
Grade Level: K-2

The story, The Juice Box Bully, is about a new student, Pete, who was previously bullied at his old school.  While he didn’t know the other children, he thought if he picked on his peers first, it would prevent them from bothering him.  When Pete became the classroom bully, the other students quickly stepped in and introduced “Mr. Peltzer’s Classroom Promise” that happened to be a no bullying rule.  After being introduced to this rule, Pete shed his bullying habits and changed his attitude.  He quickly realized that this school is much different than his old school and a bully free environment is much more enjoyable.

Element 4:Social Movement and Social Change
The Juice Box Bully is the perfect example of Element 4: Social Movement and Social Change.  Under the 6 Elements of Social Justice, Element 4 is about people not only standing up for what they believe in, but working together to make a change.  Within this book, the students of Mr. Peltzer’s class refused to be bystanders of Pete’s bullying habits.  The students stood up for they believed in,  and stood up to Pete (the bully) in order to change.

I would plan to read this book in the beginning of the year to the students in order for them to learn about the impact a group of students could make at stopping bullying if they work together.  The perfect follow-up activity for this book would be to make a promise poster for the classroom.  In order to create the poster, all the students will collaborate in groups and come up with 5 different rules to add to the poster.  As a class, we will group together the ideas to create a final product.  The classroom promise poster will be signed by all the students and displayed in the classroom.  

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