Confessions of a Former Bully is an interesting book at a time when we are seeing a big anti-bullying push in our schools. It is an oversize hardcover so it looks like a picture book–although I hesitate to term it strictly as that.
It is written in the style of the popular Diary of a Wimpy Kid series by Jeff Kinney. This style is part of what makes its content easily accessible to younger students. It resonates as genuine with the reader as opposed to setting up contrived or over-used examples. The story clarifies terms and situations in an authentic character voice.
Confessions has some great practical ideas for kids dealing with bullies. It emphasizes the difference between “tattling” and “reporting.” Any definitions, instructions or explanations provided are usually done in list form which helps young children process the most important points in the text as they are reading.
It’s a great tool with students who are struggling with a current bully situation or as a tool in a classroom or at home to start a discussion on the topic. It can then naturally broaden into a flexible springboard for both further discussion and disclosure. It could be used as a parent resource in that it may have strategies and perspectives a parent or teacher has not considered. This one is definitely worth the read for anyone with children or who works with children.