A BULLY ON THE BUS
BY DR. MILDRED D. PEYTON
WITH LEAH N. PEYTON
Illustrated by Andy Hoang
Genre: Children's fiction, 26 pages
Categories: Education, Social Skills & School Life
Release date: Sept 2015
Content Rating: G
Nicole is the main character in the book "A Bully on the School Bus." Nicole is a young girl who rides the school bus to school every day. It wasn't until Nicole started experiencing problems with another bus-rider named Dylan when she became uncomfortable being on this bus. Her experience with Dylan is a form of bullying, and she was frightened. After several incidences, Nicole made her parent aware and found a way to solve the problem.
To read reviews, please visit Dr. Mildren Peyton's page on iRead Book Tours.
HALL WAYS REVIEW: In A Bully on the Bus by Dr. Mildred D. Peyton, readers are taken into an all-too-familiar scenario of when a bully targets a particular child for no reason. Initially, readers may speculate it is a one-time incident – Dylan’s having a bad day and acting mean. No harm done, right? As is often the case with witnesses to bullying, they watch and don’t get involved. Even as Nicole may be talking herself into that very same conclusion – it’s a one-time thing – just below the surface, there is a niggling feeling that this isn’t the end of it.
Author Peyton spends a considerable amount of time underscoring that Nicole is a happy child with happy friends and a safe, happy home. Her parents are loving and supportive, and they pay attention to her words and take them seriously. This background shows that even the kids who seem to have it all can be victims of bullying. I found it odd that Nicole told her mother, “a boy on the school bus made me feel uncomfortable,” yet the mother didn’t address it, or at least probe for more information, on the spot. The wording alone makes my mommy spider senses tingle, and I find it hard to believe that a mom wouldn’t at least do some minor inquiry to be assured the issue wasn’t more serious.
Crayon drawings by the author’s daughters, Leah and Jada, start and finish A Bully on the Bus and make the book feel authentic. The kids’ drawings will help young readers feel a common ground and better connect to the story. Illustrator Andy Hoang returns to provide the rest of the colorful eye candy. Most of the pages are fully covered with the text inserted over the illustrations. This makes each page engaging and will encourage readers to dwell on the pages. The softer, muted colors and edges are a good choice to complement the story and counter any anxiety that may build for kids who have been in similar bullying situations. The characters are multicultural, and their expressions properly convey the situations and emotions. The exception to that is the depiction of the bully; readers see him angry, but we never see the bully’s eyes, and his mouth doesn’t change when he’s called-out for his behavior, making it difficult to believe Dylan is reformed.
The dialogue is natural and well-written, and the book is cleanly edited and proofread -- SO important in books for children. However, as is the case with Dr. Peyton’s book Sophia Writes to her Bully, the resolution feels a bit too neat. Bullies are rarely stopped with a simple admonishment from an adult, and my feeling upon finishing the story is that Dylan will find new ways and places to bother Nicole. It would be interesting to use this book as a read-aloud and then ask kids what they think happened the next day on the bus.
The book concludes with definitions and action tips for kids, parents, and educators reinforces. There is also a page of web resources for further exploration on the topic of bullying (QR codes would be a great addition here for teachers and librarians to use the book as the basis for a lesson.) What A Bully on the Bus does well is show that bullying behavior needs to be discussed and children need to talk to adults when it happens. The book is perfect as a read-along/read-aloud and for use as a springboard to discussions about how to recognize and react to bullying.
Thank you to the author and iRead Book Tours for providing me a lovely print copy in exchange for my honest opinion – the only kind I give.
MEET THE AUTHOR:
Dr. Mildred Peyton is the President and Founder of Peyton Consulting, LLC. Dr. Peyton established her consulting firm, which was initially geared towards school bullying services, in March 2016. She was inspired to create Peyton Consulting and become a children's author on bullying after completing her doctoral research study entitled, "Exploring the Meaning of School Bullying Among Parents of Victimized Children."
During her undergraduate internship in 2002-2003 at Salisbury Middle School in Wicomico County, Dr. Peyton and her team developed and facilitated a mentoring program, providing one-on-one conflict resolution and mediating skills to students who were identified by the program coordinator with ongoing needs of behavioral issues. One of the key/primary areas Dr. Peyton and the other mentors focused on was educating and addressing bullying issues with bullies and victims. And in her graduate program, Dr. Peyton also facilitated a school bullying focus group in 2005 at Maryvale Elementary School in Montgomery County, to teach participants about bullying behaviors and how to avoid bullying others. She also attended several bullying workshops to learn about the latest studies while working with the students. Her passion on this topic followed her even as she served as a member on the Committee on Hate/Violence at Montgomery County Office of Human Rights, in 2013. There she developed a brochure for students and parents for the annual bullying symposium and, provided rich knowledge and skills on this topic throughout the year.
Today, the company has expanded its services to target workplace bullying as well. With the experiences of others and Dr. Peyton's personal experience with adult bullying in the workplace (which caused her to resign from her employer in 2016), she believes attention, guidance, and solutions are also critical in this area. Dr. Peyton holds a Ph.D. in Human and Social Services with a concentration in Social Policy Analysis & Planning. She has a Bachelor's degree in Social Work and Sociology and a Master's degree in Counseling Psychology. Dr. Peyton is committed to using her knowledge and skills to influence positive change among students and adults.
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BOOK TOUR SCHEDULE:
Oct 8 - Library of Clean Reads - review of Sophia Writes / author interview / giveaway
Oct 9 - A Mama's Corner of the World - review of Sophia Writes / giveaway
Oct 10 - I Love A Good Book - review of Sophia Writes and Bully on Schoolbus/ giveaway
Oct 11 - A Mama's Corner of the World - review of Bully on School Bus / giveaway
Oct 15 - 100 Pages A Day - review of Sophia Writes / giveaway
Oct 15 - Rockin' Book Reviews - review of Sophia Writes / guest post / giveaway
Oct 16 - Rockin' Book Reviews - review of Bully on School Bus / giveaway
Oct 17 - Reading is My Passion - review of Sophia Writes / giveaway
Oct 18 - Library of Clean Reads - review of Bully on School Bus / giveaway
Oct 18 - Locks, Hooks and Books - review of Sophia Writes / guest post / giveaway
Oct 18 - Books Direct - review of Bully on School Bus / giveaway
Oct 19 - Reading is My Passion - review of Bully on School Bus / giveaway
Oct 19 - Hall Ways Blog - review of Sophia Writes / giveaway
Oct 19 - One Frugal Girl - review of Sophia Writes / giveaway
Oct 22 - Hall Ways Blog - review of Bully on School Bus / giveaway
Oct 22 - Books Direct - review of Sophia Writes / giveaway
Oct 22 - Reading Authors - review of A Bully on School Bus / giveaway
Oct 23 - Bookworm for Kids - review of Sophia Writes / author interview / giveaway
Oct 24 - Bookworm for Kids - review of Bully on School Bus / giveaway
Oct 25 - One Frugal Girl - review of Bully on School Bus / giveaway
Oct 26 - 100 Pages A Day - review of Bully on School Bus / giveaway
Oct 26 - Locks, Hooks and Books - review of Bully on School Bus / giveaway
TBD - Reading Authors - review of Sophia Writes / giveaway
TBD - Breath Of Life - review of Sophia Writes / guest post / giveaway
TBD - Breath Of Life - review of Bully on School Bus / giveaway
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