More than 16,000 young people are absent from school due to bullying (NSPCC), which is why Anti-Bullying Week is so important, to help children be able to get an education in a safe, fun and kind place.
The theme of Anti-Bullying Week this year was ‘choose respect’. There are lots of different events to get involved in, run by the Anti-Bullying Alliance, so make sure you head over to their website to find out what’s going on!
World Kindness Day is held during Anti-Bullying week on 13th November, first introduced in 1998 to bring people together as part of the World Kindness Movement. And there is nothing better to bring people together than an amazing book, which is why we have a great range of books on the LoveReading4Kids Loves area that tackles the issue of bullying.
Leading the way is Wonder, the international bestselling debut from RJ Palacio. Now a major film, Wonder follows August, a 10 year old boy with a severe face disfigurement starting school for the first time since being home-schooled for the majority of his life. Even though August makes new friends, he experiences systematic bullying that makes it harder and harder for him to remain the positive, joyful boy he was.
As bullying is the leading concern for boys contacting Childline (Antibullying Pro), having a book with a male protagonist experiencing bullying is very important.
Wonder is an uplifting, hopeful novel that although deals with the terrible effects of bullying, it shows the power of hope, joy and what a little shimmer of positivity can do. The only problem you’ll have with Wonder is not being able to put it down!
Told from different perspectives, Wonder shows how bullying doesn’t just affect the victim and the perpetrator, but their family, friends, teachers and classmates.
RJ Palacio (photograph taken by Tim Knox) includes the Dr. Wayne W. Dyer quote “When given the choice between being right or being kind, choose kind”. This is such an important message, and if some of Auggie’s classmates had chosen ‘kind’ then his first experience of school would have been very different.
There are many different ways to get involved with World Kindness Day, you can encourage your children to perform a random act of kindness, or create kindness cards, find out more and get more inspiration at kindnessuk.com.
As we draw closer to the festive season, and the message of ‘goodwill toward men’, there couldn’t be a better time to highlight Anti-Bullying Week and World Kindness Day, to help people #ChooseKind every day.