Recommendation of Books for 5yo Being Snubbed by Classmates
February 6, 2013 2:13 PM   Subscribe

I am looking for some suggestions of book titles for books that a 5 year old girl can understand though not necessarily be able to read. She's encountering cliques in her kindergarten class, being snubbed, and the teacher is offering no help. I realize this is temporary but in the meantime surely there are books letting her know it happens sometimes and maybe some suggestions of how she can work it out. Thanks for any help.
posted by july1baby to Human Relations (17 answers total) 14 users marked this as a favorite
Chrysanthemum by Kevin henkes! No link because I'm on my phone but it's about a girl who is picked on in kindergarten because she has a funny name. It has beautiful illustrations and a good introduction about being a little different for five year olds. Kevin henkes is a fantastic author who really captures the intricacies of the early grades. I highly suggest checking out all of his books.
posted by ruhroh at 2:35 PM on February 6, 2013 [6 favorites]

Here's a link to the book mentioned by ruhroh. Clicked into the thread feeling bummed I didn't have anything helpful to offer - grateful to ruhroh for supplying me with something.
posted by pammeke at 2:54 PM on February 6, 2013

My former kindergartener loved Stand Tall, Molly Lou melon, but you'll also want to browse A Mighty Girl's list of books on bullying.

(Apparently AMG is Teh Answer to all AskMes tonight. You're welcome. ;-) )
posted by instamatic at 3:14 PM on February 6, 2013

I was coming to recommend another Kevin Henkes book, Chester's Way. Basically Chester and Wilson are best friends and don't want to include Lily until they find out they have a lot in common with Lily. There's also Can I Play Too by Mo Willems (that whole series is fantastic!) Another sweet one about just being shy and scared to make friends is Scaredy Squirrel Makes a Friend. Or there's Yoko by Rosemary Wells where Yoko is made fun of in kindergarten for bringing sushi and ends up with a friend who wants to try it and play restaurant with her. It's very sweet and gives the mesasge that you don't need to give up who you are to make friends who like you.

Or you could go another way and read books about girls who do their own thing and don't care what others think: the character Lily in Kevin Henkes is like that, Eloise (though there are no other kids in Eloise), Fancy Nancy (if she likes that), Olivia.

One more suggestion is to ask the teacher if she sees another kid in the class that would be a good match for your daughter, someone who'd be a good playmate? That worked for us.
posted by biscuits at 3:14 PM on February 6, 2013

It's been a long time since I read it and I don't really remember whether it has helpful suggestions or could be interpreted to have them, but what came to mind for me was The Sneetches. It's about societal-level discrimination, allegory-wise, but I remember also taking away a lesson about the foolishness of exclusion in general.
posted by Linda_Holmes at 3:47 PM on February 6, 2013

Oh, and The Sneeches is a Dr. Seuss book which if I remember correctly has two or three other small stories in it. Charming, too.
posted by St. Alia of the Bunnies at 3:50 PM on February 6, 2013

THE HUNDRED DRESSES. Might be slightly above her reading level, but she'd be able to understand it if it's read to her. A lovely story about a girl who's excluded at school because of her funny name and the fact that she has only one dress. The other girls learn a lesson, and regret their treatment of her when they discover her real value. The book also has beautiful illustrations that she would probably love.
posted by OolooKitty at 4:23 PM on February 6, 2013 [2 favorites]

Hooper Humperdink? Not him!
posted by Temeraria at 4:28 PM on February 6, 2013

Try Purplelicious. (Sorry, can't link right now.). A girl in elementary school is shunned by the mean girls for her personal style.
posted by tigerjade at 4:50 PM on February 6, 2013 [1 favorite]

Nthing Chrysanthemum! My kids still go back to that story all the time. For some reason, it resonates with my 9-year-old lately.

We also love the Beverley Cleary books, especially the Ramona series that follows Ramona and her family from 4 until 10. Her character makes a lot of mistakes, has difficult times, but also has a lot of fun. We listened to them (Stockard Channing narrates), read the books aloud, and my kids go back to their favorites every now and then.
posted by mamabear at 5:15 PM on February 6, 2013 [1 favorite]

Don't forget Pipi Longstocking!
posted by Galadhwen at 6:41 PM on February 6, 2013

Growing Up with a Bucket Full of Happiness: Three Rules for a Happier Life is intended for slightly older students, but my first grader loves it. The concept of dipping from someone else's bucket and putting a lid on your own bucket has helped her to process/work through cliques and drama.
posted by poodelina at 7:32 PM on February 6, 2013

Kathryn Otoshi wrote a picture book called One which deals with bullying pretty well and, happily, is written for children ages preschool-grade 1. The schoolchildren in my state picked it to win an award (that's how I know about it--I was at the award luncheon), which certainly says something about its appeal to children.
posted by librarylis at 9:33 PM on February 6, 2013 [1 favorite]

I still remember the details of Bernard Waber's book But Names Will Never Hurt Me though it took me a bit of googling to unearth it again. It's about a girl who is teased for her name and, iirc, draws support from the love of her parents and family.
posted by rabbitbookworm at 11:42 PM on February 6, 2013

Belinda the Ballerina, Amazing Grace, Bullies Never Win, Crafty Chloe, Marisol McDonald Doesn't Match, Stand Straight Ella Kate, The Sissy Duckling. These are all excellent books and feature girls (except The Sissy Duckling, but what a great book) who are somehow different and not accepted initially but in the end thrive.
posted by Dansaman at 11:17 AM on February 7, 2013 [1 favorite]

Each Kindness, by Jacqueline Woodson deals with the more insidious, and (in my experience) more common form of bullying wherein the target is ignored. Beautiful book.
posted by missrachael at 10:51 AM on February 8, 2013

Response by poster: Thank you to everyone for your suggestions. I got her many of the books mentioned including one called "It's Hard Being Five. How to work your control panel." and "How to make friends" or something similar, which was the biggest hit of all. She took it to school and the teacher is going to read it to the entire class.

Thanks again! You've made a world of difference in one 5 year old's life!
posted by july1baby at 1:02 PM on February 27, 2013

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