Chester Raccoon and the Big Bad Bully

( 9 )

Overview


In this latest addition to the Kissing Hand book collection, Chester Raccoon must learn to deal with another common problem of childhood: a bully at school.

When Mrs. Raccoon learns that there is a bully problem at school, she decides to investigate the situation. But after seeing the bully for herself, she shares a story about a forest that was full of smooth yellow stones, and how the animals living there changed a pointy stone they found ...

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Chester Raccoon and the Big Bad Bully

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Overview


In this latest addition to the Kissing Hand book collection, Chester Raccoon must learn to deal with another common problem of childhood: a bully at school.

When Mrs. Raccoon learns that there is a bully problem at school, she decides to investigate the situation. But after seeing the bully for herself, she shares a story about a forest that was full of smooth yellow stones, and how the animals living there changed a pointy stone they found into a smooth stone so that it wouldn't hurt any tender paws.

Chester, Ronny, and Cassy follow the spirit of Mrs. Raccoon's story when they next encounter the Bully. Approaching him as a group, they invite him to play, proving that the best way to get rid of an enemy is to make him or her a friend.

This book encourages children to understand that many child bullies are themselves unhappy and gives readers a good example of settling differences by peaceful means. Educators will embrace this story about a positive strategy for dealing with a bully.

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Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal

K-Gr 2

This fourth title in the series that began with The Kissing Hand (Tanglewood, 2007) drips with the same cloying sentimentality that characterized the others. Chester Raccoon, his younger brother, and a friend tell Mrs. Raccoon that they want to stay home from school because they are being bullied. When they describe the various nasty things the badger does, Mother Raccoon walks them to school, then leaves them there to face another day of torment. When they return and recite another litany of abuse-"Even Owl Teacher couldn't get him to behave"-she calls all the animals together and shares a didactic tale about a forest where the creatures treasure smooth yellow stones, but then one day happen upon a unique blue one that is sharp and pointy. Working together, they chip away at the sharp points until the blue stone is just like the yellow ones. The next day, the animals go outside for recess together, confront the bully, and then ask him to play. He "squeals in delight" at the offer. Simplistic solutions of this nature do little to assist youngsters who must deal with genuine bullies whose pattern of behavior is rarely altered by the offer of a game of catch. Gibson's illustrations, although occasionally leaning toward the precious, are bright and attractive, and the faces of the animals are quite expressive. The story will have an audience where the other books are popular, but better choices to discuss bullying abound, including Alexis O'Neill's The Recess Queen (Scholastic, 2002) and Trudy Ludwig's My Secret Bully (Tricycle, 2005).-Grace Oliff, Ann Blanche Smith School, Hillsdale, NJ

Kirkus Reviews
The author of The Kissing Hand (1993) revisits her raccoon family in this sappy and didactic tale about coping with a bully. Chester and his siblings do not want to attend school; their mother finally discovers that a badger is bullying them regularly. She gives them the kissing-hand treatment and sends them off to school. When they return home and recount the bully's activities, she gathers all the schoolchildren together and tells an allegorical tale about how to smooth the rough edges of a bully. Of course, it works instantly (and without following the logic of the allegory), and they all become great friends. Jarring changes of perspective and highly anthropomorphized Disney-esque animals assault the senses with color and complete coverage of each page. The slick, Photoshopped quality of the illustrations reflects the facile text. Unfortunately, this is sure to be requested by the many adult fans of The Kissing Hand; steer them to the likes of Helen Lester's Hooway for Wodney Wat (1999) or Anthony Browne's Willy books for kid-savvy treatment. (Picture book. 4-7)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781933718156
  • Publisher: Tanglewood Press IN
  • Publication date: 8/25/2008
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 220,861
  • Age range: 3 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.10 (w) x 10.10 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 9 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 9 Customer Reviews
  • Posted October 19, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    A Bully Too Bad!

    Chester and his friends are terrified of the playground bully. Thankfully, they have Chester's mom to go to for wisdom and practical advice on how to take charge of the situation and tame the bully in question. This is just another beautiful book in the Chester series. I think it's perfect for children in the K-3rd grades categories. I'm not sure younger children will relate as well, although I did read it to my 5 yr. old grandson who seemed to understand and love it. This may be the quality of the relationship between Chester and his mom shining through, along with the cooperation of his friends more than the bullying situation, however. One issue I have about the book is the length. For children of this age group, it's seems to me it's just too long. I think it would have been better if it had been shorter. Over 30 pages looses a child this young... Deborah/TheBookishDame

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 24, 2014

    River and Lake

    Good for cooling off on a summer day

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 1, 2013

    Highly recommended

    This is a great story and one that can help children understand and deal with bullying. I read it to my grandson's 2nd grade class when I visited. It was one of several books the teacher had for us to choose from. I loved it! I also read it with a child I mentor who enjoyed it as well. This story would be appropriate and appeal to children in grades K-3 and I would definitely read other books by this author.

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  • Posted April 28, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Chester and Fiends Calm a Bully Badger

    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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  • Posted April 11, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    it is a cute story for young children dealing with bullies

    Bullying is on increasingly serious issue that young kids face. In Chester Raccoon and the Big Bad Bully Mrs. Raccoon helps both Chester and Ronny Raccoon, as well as some other loveable forest friends, deal with the bullying Badger. When I read this book to my 4 year old son it sparked a great conversation about what bullies are and how he needs to deal with them. I am grateful up to this point to that neither of my children have fallen victim to bullying or have been the bully themselves. I have heartfelt gratitude towards Penn for writing Chester Raccoon and the Big Bad Bully. In the event of a bullying episode I am sure that this book will prove to be helpful. I am glad to see Penn address the serious issue in a way young children can relate too. It is never too early to talk to our children about difficult situations. I highly recommend this book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 5, 2010

    Disappointed

    I was trying to find a book to help my son deal with a bully at school. This story suggests making friends with the bully. This is not a realistic solution for dealing with a bully. I'm returning the book tomorrow. I will not even read it to my child. Useless.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 11, 2010

    Great lesson for kids

    A great story with Chester, who many kids already know from The Kissing Hand. A lesson on how to deal with bullies and turn them into a friend.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 4, 2009

    Empowering!

    With an eye on Bullying, Mrs. Penn touches a topic very close to the hearts of teachers, parents and children. Read how Chester faces and overcomes a sad and unfortunate rite of passage.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 4, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

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