The No More Bullying Book for Kids by Vanessa Green Allen, is a book that empowers children to become ‘strong, happy and bully-proof’ versions of themselves, while giving parents and teachers alike the tools and resources to open up important conversations at home and school.
It empowers children to stand up for what is right and to do that in ways that are safe for them as well as others, or in other words, how to be an upstander. It allows children and adults to understand, in simple terms, what bullying is and what can be done about it, but also practically applies the theories learned in each section to very relevant scenarios of bullying.
Having lived experience of bullying at school, this book only emphasized the importance of these scenarios for me, and the opportunities for discussion that they provide between children, their parents or teachers. I wish someone had told me these things before or had these conversations with me when I was at school. Even though this book is aimed at children, I found myself throughout enjoying and wanting to take on some of the techniques used in my own life’s challenges.
What I love most about the book was the author’s caring and embracing writing tone which creates a sense of connection between her and her readers, especially the young ones. From Allen’s experience in working with children who experience bullying, her tone feels safe. Another important aspect of the book was its strengths-based approach to empowering children to deal with bullying in their lives. Instead of coming from a needs-based approach such as “Something bad will happen to you and you need help”, she says “Challenges will come, they are part of life. However, with resilience, you will be more prepared to face those challenges head on and keep moving with your chin up”.
This empowering read allows children to focus on their strengths and motivates them to not give up, but to be the best version of themselves and achieve the things they want to. The No More Bullying Book for Kids is an important tool to make our children feel safe and equipped to deal with bullying, which is why I believe that it should be read by schools across Aotearoa.
Disclaimer: Please note these reviews are not intended as endorsements or recommendations from the Mental Health Foundation. This feature introduces resources that may be useful for individuals with an interest in bullying prevention, mental health and wellbeing topics.