Ideas about bullies (and how we define people) are turned on their heads in this playful rhyming story that questions why a child is being labeled a bully.
Gertie the elephant says everyone on the playground should stay far away from Bunny because she's super mean. But Kitty has questions: How did Bunny become a bully? Was she born that way? Was she stung by a bullybug? Or maybe she caught the bully flu? Wait, does that mean bullying is contagious? And if it is, couldn't the other animals catch it, too? But ... then no one would play with them either, and that doesn't seem fair. Is it possible that Bunny is sorry? Should they give her a second chance?
Not your typical bullying story, Lana Button's fresh take flips the focus from the child being bullied to the one being called a bully. In cadenced rhyming text, the compassionate and insightful Kitty leads children through a series of questions that get at the core of the assumptions we make about others and how it feels to be on the other side of name-calling. Christine Battuz's expressive illustrations use tenderness and a touch of humor to complement the emotional level of the text. Altogether, this is a perfect child-level exploration of empathy. It would be an excellent choice for discussions about bullying, or more broad issues of social development. It also works for character education lessons on empathy, compassion, fairness and inclusiveness.
About the authors
LANA BUTTON a grandi dans la petite ville frontalière de St. Stephen, au Nouveau-Brunswick. Elle a une formation d’actrice et d’éducatrice de la petite enfance. Ses albums illustrés ont été en nomination pour plusieurs récompenses, dont les prix Blue Spruce, Shining Willow, le Jean Throop IODE Award et le Rainforest of Reading. Elle est bénévole pour les organisations littéraires IBBY Canada, First Book et One World Schoolhouse. Lana et son mari ont trois filles adultes et vivent à Burlington, en Ontario.
LANA BUTTON grew up in the tiny border town of St. Stephen, New Brunswick. She has a background in acting and early childhood education. She writes for young children, and her picture books have been shortlisted for numerous awards. She enjoys reading books out loud whenever she gets the chance.
CHRISTINE BATTUZ est née en France et a obtenu une maîtrise de l’Académie des beaux-arts de Pérouse, en Italie. Elle a illustré plus de soixante livres jeunesse et a enseigné l’art aux enfants de tous âges. Elle vit à Bromont, au Québec.
CHRISTINE BATTUZ was born in France and received her Masters of Fine Arts at the Academy of Fine Arts of Perugia in Italy. She has illustrated over sixty books for children, and has taught art to children of all ages. She lives in Bromont, Quebec.
- Short-listed, Jean Throop Book Award, IODE
... the message of giving friends a second chance is well expressed, and teachers will find a useful opportunity in identifying for children who the real victim of bullying is in this story.
A playful approach to a serious topic, this is a great choice for young readers to explore what it means to be a bully and the reflect on the power of forgiveness.
School Library Journal
... a beautifully illustrated atypical bullying story for primary aged children ...