Book offers parents and kids 15 Ways to Zap a Bully #Bullying

Bullying. Whether your kid is the bully or the one being bullied, it’s likely that at some point over your child’s life, you will deal with this issue, and probably more than once. It’s hard. When we know about it, it’s hard as a parent not to jump in and defend our baby! But what if they don’t tell us? They might not. That’s why it’s great to prepare them ahead of time with ways that they can respond.

Author Jackie Humans knows exactly what it’s like to deal with bullying. Her daughter has Asperger Syndrome, and so helping kids empower themselves has become her life’s mission.

15 Ways to ZAP a Bully! empowers children (and their parents) with:

  • Easy ways to shift the power from the bully to the target
  • Snappy comebacks, ‘magic’ words and phrases are the best way to take the wind out of the bully’s sails
  • One word responses work best for young or verbally challenged children
  • Parents should role-play bully zapping strategies with their children by taking on the role of the target and letting their kids teach them what they’re doing wrong
  • Targets can enhance their credibility by keeping a journal of the 5 W’s: Who did it, What happened, When, Where, and the most important W – Witness!

Though 15 Ways to ZAP a Bully! is formatted like a paperback picture book, complete with comic-style full-page drawings, I wouldn’t share this book with a young child. Most of these tips are probably more appropriate for an older child (10 or 11 and up). I can’t imagine “equipping” my 7-year-old son who is probably already a little too quick with his emotions and responses to deal with bullying in this way.

However, as a parent, it’s great to be ready, and the ideas behind why kids bully one another (they want attention, they’re just mean etc) are ones you could share with your child no matter their age.

One thing this book does is raise awareness of the issues. In most schools bullying is supposed to be a no-tolerance issue, and it’s a subject that is usually covered, so reinforcing it at home will only make your child feel more comfortable talking about it with you or with a teacher if necessary.

I’m glad I looked at this short, easy-to-digest book that will help me with coaching my kids as they deal with other kids throughout their school years.

If you would like to win a copy of this book, leave a comment here. We’ll announce the winner on July 11.

Original post by Jennifer Donovan, 5 Minutes for Books managing editor


  1. Alison S. says

    This looks like a book that I need to have. I’m already thinking about the bullying issue since my son in more of a sensitive type personality.

  2. Angel S. says

    I need this book! My son is overweight. There is much attention to rants about race, religion, sexuality and limitations. Apparently the only acceptable for of prejudice is obesity. Even the adults can still get away with it. We are teaching him to east less, move more. He is learning all about nutrition and making healthy choices. I would like to help my son deal with the hurtful commetns thrown his way. This book may help!

    • says

      Angel–she actually talks about people making fun of things that are totally obvious to just make the bully seem stupid. If they say “You’re fat,” the child can respond, “Oh no, who told you my secret?” or something. It takes the wind out of their sails.

  3. Kellie F. says

    This sounds like a Great resourse to have on hand! My DD is 8 years old & a 5 Year Cancer Survivior. (YAY!!). She is quite small for her age and is always being called a “baby”, or the other kids tell her she us too short for certain games that they play in PE or at recess. She often comes home upset. She is going into the 3rd grade and she is about the size of the kindergardeners. When she’s upset about someone picking on her, I just tell her to say “Watch out, cause dynamite comes in SMALL packages!”

    • says

      I responded to Angel right above you about this, but the author does mention situations involving height or weight. The bully is talking about something obvious, so the child can respond by making them feel stupid. Like “Oh no! I’m small?? Who told you!”

      I would think as she gets older, she could actually make them feel bad by saying something along the lines of “Maybe you didn’t know that I had cancer when I was younger.” I can’t imagine them having a retort to that.

  4. Suzanne R. says

    I was bullied in middle school and it made my life miserable. I still carry those self-esteem scars. Would love to have a resource to turn to for when my daughter encounters bullies!

  5. Jen B. says

    I need to get this book. As for the school’s “no tolerance” policy, I beg to differ. We’ve had issues with bullying for the last few years and I find it a very difficult subject to explain to my 9 year old. We have to teach all kids, not just the victim, to speak out against this.

  6. says

    I have a nephew who is so bullied, it makes one want to cry. His mother has tried everything in the school system to end it, to no avail. This would be absolutely perfect to give her.

  7. says

    I would love to have this for my 13 year old. He has been bullied this past year on the bus going and coming from school. The Bully is also in his Christian school, and thought of highly by the teachers and admins. An example of what he does….he sneeked up behind him and popped a balloon to scare him. Grabbed his cell phone and dropped and broke it. He teases him constantly because he doesn’t play sports!!

    Thank You

  8. tina frampton says

    my granddaughter is five always pushing tugging or pulling on kids at school gets alot of reds she fully understands that it is wrong also not nice so i think this book might help. advice on books to not be a bully is greatly appreciated we have book stores what heading do i look undr


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