Teaching young children the difference between bullying and teasing: A storybook
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Tease Monster, written by Julia Cook and illustrated by Anita Du Falla (2013), is a storybook targeted for children 4 years of age or older that teaches the difference between teasing and bullying. The story is centered on “One-of-a-Kind”, who likes to do things that other students find funny, so One gets teased a lot. After a day of being teased, One goes home and tells his mom about his bad day of relentless teasing. One’s mom explains that there are two different types of teasing, positive teasing and mean teasing. Positive teasing is meant to build positive relationships between friends, and is not meant to be hurtful. In contrast, mean teasing is meant to put another person down, and comes from someone that has a negative relationship with the child. One further learns that teasing also depends on the person receiving the teasing. When One’s brother is hurt by One’s teasing, One apologizes for his unintentional hurtfulness. At the end of the book, parents and teachers are provided further information on how to teach children to differentiate between positive teasing and bullying, and are provided examples on how to approach the subject with children.
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