Imagine living in a world that celebrates all of us for who we are. Now let’s make it happen!
Why I wrote Aaron the Different:
There are way too many stories in the world’s long and recent history demonstrating the terrible impact of bias, bullying, and discrimination.
As an Organizational Psychologist, I focus on helping create a workplace where people feel respected and safe and understand that they are valued. But unfortunately, I see firsthand how discrimination plays out every day. So I wanted to prepare our children better and help them develop more vital skills for inclusion and acceptance.
So, I created a story supporting the essential mindful discussion around tolerance, acceptance, inclusion, and belonging. I believe strongly that we have the power to change things for the better if we all work together.
Why is this Book important?:
Effects of Bullying:
- One out of every five (20.2%) students report being bullied (National Center for Educational Statistics, 2019 ).
- Students who experience bullying are at increased risk for depression, anxiety, sleep difficulties, lower academic achievement, and dropping out of school. (Centers for Disease Control, 2019)
- Bullied students indicate that bullying hurts how they feel about themselves (27%), their relationships with friends and family (19%), their school work (19%), and their physical health (14%). (National Center for Educational Statistics, 2019)
- Lack of broadly relatable stories that promote a culture of belonging and allow students to project their reality in a non-threatening and safe level.
- There is a growing demand for anti-bullying, diversity, equity, and inclusion in schools.
- Promotes inclusion and exploration of identities and differences among students with shared and disparate backgrounds.
- Educators and students can read about Aaron and understand and appreciate the differences that enrich our world.
- Provides school staff, students, and their families with unique thinking and feeling questions to facilitate the critical discussion of inclusion and acceptance of differences (their own and others).
- Aaron the Different can be incorporated into the classroom curriculum to teach students about differences, inclusion, and belonging.
- The social and emotional benefits of allowing a child to safely explore their feelings regarding differences and inclusion through Aaron’s experiences are enormous.
Parents, caregivers, therapists, and educators can use this story and these questions for children of all ages to discuss the critical and sensitive areas of inclusion, belonging, and acceptance. This meaningful story can also be integrated into a social, emotional, inclusion, and anti-bullying curriculum.
I look forward to connecting and am available to facilitate sessions on belonging and acceptance. I can also customize plans to incorporate Aaron’s story into your school or educational system’s social cognition and anti-bullying curriculum. Please get in touch with me at ettyburk.com/contact.
Together, we can make a difference