To involve parents in promoting literacy and engage in a conversation about the role of bystander behavior in bullying situations, I am sponsoring a Family Book Talk on January 14th at 7:30am in the middle school library. Parents are invited to come join us, with their middle school child, to read and discuss the book Bystander by James Preller . This is a terrific opportunity for parents to get involved with their children at school and join us for meaningful conversation about an important topic.
What I especially like about this book is that it takes on the complexity of bullying at the middle school level. It considers the reasons that adolescents bully and explores the factors that contribute to an individual becoming a victim. It also considers the importance of bystander behavior. We have many programs here at the middle school to encourage bystander responsibility in bullying situations. Yet being a positive bystander is one of the most difficult things for a middle school student to do. The tendency is for middle school children to do everything in their power to fit in. If a child wants to fit in, it is hard to stand up to a large crowd of other children who are singling out another student to bully. In this book, one of the characters does exactly this, but he pays a heavy price for doing so. The fact that the book is set on Long Island, adds another layer of interest.
You can read more about the book and order a copy at: http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_ss_c_1_9?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=bystander&sprefix=bystander
Developing a love of reading in our adolescent children is a particular challenge. One of the most powerful things you can do is to model reading habits yourself. What better way than to read this book together with your child and attend our book talk?! If you wish to participate please call or send me an e-mail.