Bullying is a nationwide issue on playgrounds, in classrooms, at home, and online. The topic is both sensitive and timely, and now more than ever it needs to be addressed. For very young children and students, picture books provide model examples of both good and bad behavior, and adults can use these relatable characters and stories to make the connection with young readers. In Llama Llama and the Bully Goat by Anna Dewdney, Llama Llama witnesses and falls victim to name-calling and teasing. Llama's response and the lesson he learns inspired us to create the Pledge to Play Nice kit. Use the enclosed poster, activities, pledge certificate and stickers to engage your children in the "play nice" cause. Encourage children to play nice by being a friend to others, and also by being themselves. We hope you can incorporate this kit into your classrooms and communities to treat one another with respect and kindness.
Part of being kind to ourselves is having confidence and appreciating what is special about each of us. Many times children who lack self-confidence end up being victims of bullying or become bullies themselves. It's also important for children to realize that being a friend means more than just being "nice." It also means making sure that other children are included in activities and not feeling left out or rejected. The books and activities we have included will help you introduce these ideas to children in an engaging way.
In addition to the activities, we are also including a "play nice" pledge written by Anna Dewdney. Our hope is that you will have children take the pledge and refer back to it throughout the year to remind them that playing nice is something we must all commit to in order to create a positive and safe environment.