We hear about it every day. In school, on the playground, on the soccer field, in the mall, it’s everywhere! So what am I talking about? Bullying! Whether it’s on the news, in the paper, at an assembly or, sadly, from our own children, we hear about bullying daily. We hear about kids feeling left out. We hear about kids being picked on. We even hear about kids taking their own lives due to feelings of isolation and sadness. So how can we help prevent bullying? How can we make a difference?
I was recently introduced to a new Bullying Prevention program called Cool Kind Kid. The premise behind this amazing program is that bullying needs to be addressed proactively instead of reactively. We need to teach young children that being kind to others is COOL! Through this program, kids gain valuable social skills, develop manners and learn about respect.
When asked if I wanted to review the first book in this series, I immediately said “YES” as I have seen firsthand what bullying can do. Written by Barbara Gilmour and illustrated by James J. Dunn, the first picture book in the series, Tanner Wants to Be Cool, is a fun interactive way to teach kids what it means to be cool. Through colorful and engaging pictures and fun songs, this easy to read book teaches kids over 10 ways to be cool as well as the importance of having good manners.
My son and I really enjoyed reading this book together. He was engaged and interested throughout the entire story and even asked to read it again by himself when we were done. Although I did not have the CD to go along with the songs, I created my own beat which my son really enjoyed. As we read, my son smiled, laughed and pointed at the pictures. I found so many amazing benefits to reading this book together!
Benefits of Reading Tanner Wants to Be COOL
Opens the Lines of Communication
This book is a wonderful way to begin the conversation about bullying and teaching kids what it means to be cool. As we read, I asked my son to answer the questions before Tanner did. I also asked him to come up with some of his own ideas. We talked about what he thought it meant to be cool and what some things he could do to be cool at home and at school.
The colorful illustrations really bring the characters to life which helps kids stay engaged and interested. The pictures are also a great way to help enhance comprehension especially for children who struggle with reading and/or auditory processing. In addition, adding music and singing to the book offers another sensory layer that helps enhance learning.
Enhances Social Skills
The point of this series is to help enhance children’s social skills, and that is exactly what the first book in the series does. While reading, my son was learning the importance of being polite, taking turns and sharing. He also learned the importance of self-care, respecting himself, others and pets and following rules to stay safe.
Introduction to The Magic Words
“Whats the magic word?” is a phrase I remember from my childhood. It is also one I use frequently with my kids. In many households, however, these words are no longer an emphasis, but with Cool Kind Kid, the importance of these Magic Words is emphasized again. At the end of the book, my son learned 10 Magic Words phrases that he can practice every day which will make him a COOL KID!
These are just a few of the many benefits of reading the first book in this Cool Kind Kid series, Tanner Wants to Be COOL. I cannot wait to read the next 4 books in this series.
Cool Kind Kid Bullying Prevention Kits are available for parents, educators, assemblies and even camp programs. You can learn more on the Cool Kind Kid website.
In full disclosure, we were provided the first book in this series in exchange for our honest review.