Empathy Featured Book

Nov 22, 2023 | Curriculum Connection | 0 comments

Say Something by Peggy Moss


From Goodreads:

The girl in this story sees it happening, but she would never do these mean things herself. Then one day something happens that shows her that being a silent bystander isn’t enough. Will she take some steps on her own to help another kid? Could it be as simple as sitting on the bus with the girl no one has befriended (and discovering that she has a great sense of humor)? Resources at the end of the book will help parents and children talk about teasing and bullying and find ways to stop it at school.One child at a time can help change a school.

Since its release in May 2004, this book has sparked Say Something weeks in schools from Maine to Shanghai. It has been turned into plays, distributed to hundreds of kids at conferences, read by principals on large screens, and rewritten by students in several schools (Do Something! is a favorite title). Most importantly, Say Something has helped start countless conversations among kids and adults about teasing.

We’re celebrating with this new edition, updated with a new cover and an author’s note.

  After reading the story to the class, process it with these or similar questions:

  • Did you like this book?
  • What word do we use to describe the kids who were mean to other students in the story? (Bully)
  • The people that bullies pick on are called Targets.  How do you think the targets felt in this story?
  • How did the main character feel when she was picked on in the cafeteria?
  • Do you think she understood how the other targets felt after she was bullied?
  • Empathy is sensing others’ emotions.  Do you think you can sense what others are feeling if you haven’t felt it yourself?
  • The people who witness bullying are called Bystanders.  Who were the bystanders in this story?
  • When Bystanders do nothing, how does that make Targets feel?
  • How do Bystanders feel when they do nothing?
  • How would it make Targets feel if Bystanders asked the bully to stop, stood behind the Target, or said encouraging things to the Target after the bully leaves?
  • How would Bullies feel if their Targets are supported?
  • The next time you see someone being bullied, will you find your Empathy and support the Target?