A children's book on bullying awareness and disability tolerance
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There is a plentiful amount of children’s literature that strives to portray real social conflicts that are prevalent in society. However, few children’s books address bullying and how to problem solve effectively in common recreational settings, where there is less adult supervision and children are likely to misbehave. Current children’s books fail to acknowledge and accurately describe the hostility that may occur during social interaction among young children in a comprehensive manner. In addition, there is a scarce amount of children’s literature that is displayed in a digital format that is not only more appealing to young readers, but is also increasingly accessible to those of all abilities. Research suggests that there is a need for a children’s book that contains anti-bullying themes and is written using simple language with relatable characters. If younger children are exposed to complex social dilemmas at an early age, studies show that they are more likely to develop lasting positive morals and more tolerant, open-minded attitudes. The aim of this children’s book centered on bullying and disability tolerance is to provide education to young children from the ages of 3-6 years on the importance of accepting people with differences in a way that they can easily understand. The book will have characters of all genders and ethnicities so that readers can relate to them and apply what they learn to their own lives. Ideally, the book will be implemented across many domains such as in schools, clinical facilities, and within children’s homes. Interviewees were asked a variety of questions after being provided with three consecutive drafts of the book in order to make changes that reflect the needs of various young readers. The interviewees consisted of two occupational therapists, two speech language pathologists, a child-life specialist, two academic teachers, and a parent of a child. Responses showed that the book would beneficial in teaching children to treat all peers equally and how to effectively problem solve should a bullying crisis occur. Therefore, it is recommended that this book in both paper and digital formats could be successfully utilized in academic, clinical, and home-based settings to spread anti-bullying awareness and assist children in adopting tolerant mentalities.