by Audrey Penn; Barbara Gibson Book : Fiction : Preschool
Chester Faces a Badgering Bully   (2011-04-28)
Chester and his pals have been getting bullied by a badger and do not know what to do. Mrs. Raccoon sits the kids down and tells them a story. In the story a forest floor is covered with shiny yellow stones that are cherished and collected. One day a blue stone, with sharp points, is found among all the fabulous yellow stones. No one wanted this ugly rock until they were shown how to value it and help the stone become a better stone. So the animals went to work chipping off the points and polishing the rock. Soon they had a shiny rock they could cherish, though it was still blue.
Chester and his pals return to school ready to show some yellow rock spirit toward the bully badger. As a group they approached the badger so closely that the badger became scared. When Chester got nose-to-nose with the badger he smiled and invited the bully to play with everyone. Astonished, the badger agreed and soon after he stopped his bully ways and joined the other animal kids. He was even conscience of being gentle so his quils would not bust the toys.
This is another cute Chester Raccoon picture book that helps young children understand sometimes difficult concepts. This one on bullies takes a rather benign approach that may work with younger children. The story had the bullied kids be extra nicer to the bully, hoping they can wear down his anger, frustration, loneliness (Mrs. Raccoon’s theory), and whatever causes kids to bully.
The illustrations are colorful, expressive and convey the story well. I think any young child would love this book and would learn to be a little nicer to others and to include others despite appearances or defenses. That is a terrific thing to instill in children. The fabric of our society is only as strong as the threads which weave it. A nice message: be nice even to those who treat you badly because you just might help that person change for the better. OK, maybe that is a lot to get from a 32 page young children’s picture book, yet I say what I think in reviews and I think this book is a wonderful way to entertain and teach.
Note: received from netgalley, courtesy of the publisher
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