Archive for October, 2012

Writing about bullying can be a frustrating experience.  Many of the reviews of my book, Forgiveness Fits, suggested that my main character was whiny, judgmental, and annoying, and because I based the book on my own experiences, I often found such feedback hard to swallow.

I focused on showing readers why she became whiny, judgmental, and annoying…and reviewers stopped mentioning it.

Dealing with teenagers who bully–which I do often in my role as a teacher–is also frustrating.  Most kids think bullying is when a big, unlikeable kid smashes a smaller unlikeable kid into a locker and steals his lunch money.  But it’s much more subtle than that.  When I see kids refuse to work with a classmate, or call someone annoying, I tell them their behavior is a form of bullying.  When kids shun or ignore a classmate, that’s a form of bullying.  Everyone deserves to be treated as a contributing member of the classroom.  Singling anyone out for different treatment is wrong.

Today’s Publishers Weekly describes how publishers are handling the issue of bullying.  Here’s a quote:  “Lecesne believes that an essential goal of bullying prevention is to “give kids the tools to make their lives better. Any book or film that gives young people those tools—‘here’s what I did to get through it’—is great.”  Click the link to read more.  There’s also a list of books that address bullying.

What ideas would you like to see teachers or publishers implement in the fight against bullying?


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