The website “Words That Heal” is an incredible resource for addressing my guiding questions. Although it focuses on bullying, the website highlights the use of literature that addresses bullying and why it is important. Developing empathy is crucial in preventing bullying so it directly connects to my topic.
On the website I learned about bibliotherapy, or the use of literature to address problems. The writer provided a detailed list of criteria one should consider when choosing an appropriate book for children with underlying themes of empathy. Some of the recommendations included finding books with kid-friendly and recognizable language, a clear process of working through problems, and using situations that are relatable and realistic. It also discusses topics that are counterintuitive in addressing bullying and actually deter empathy. The topics are vengeance, suspension or expulsion of the bully, and peer mediation. It discusses why these are not representative of empathy while also providing a list of resources of books with topics of empathy and bullying.