Edwardo: The Horriblest Boy in the Whole Wide World written and illustrated by John Burningham is an absolute must in every school library. It is also one of those books that should be sent home with a note that the parents and child need to read together after the work has been done in class. It is hard to say whether John Burningham was trying to reach the adults or children with this great book.
Edwardo was simply a product of his environment. How do you teach such a big important concept and relate it to a classroom of children? It is not an easy task, but it certainly is an important one.
Children are extremely teachable. In fact, they are like sponges and people are often unaware what they may be teaching the children around them. The way that children treat each other also has a huge effect on behavior.
Edwardo is a perfectly normal little boy, until he is labeled and then his world changes. So what activities may be helpful in the classroom to teach children to have positive outlooks and statements?
Who is that in the mirror?
This is a big activity and it requires help in the classroom and from the families, but it is a life changer.
Have families, other teachers, classmates, principal, and any others you can to write positive adjectives about each student. Make certain all students have the same amount of comments and feel free to improvise where necessary.
On the day of the activity you will be in need of lots of room helpers. Make certain that no child has the experience with their own parent. Set up some areas with some lighted makeup mirrors. The children should notice this is no ordinary item that has been lying around the school.
Each child is escorted to a station and looks in the mirror and listens as the adult reads all the great compliments about the child.
When the students leave for the night they have a sealed envelope with all the compliments so they can review them with parents at home.
Match the adjectives
This activity is fun because children can do sheets for themselves, family members, teachers and others. In the circle is the picture of the person and then there are a list of adjectives. They draw a line to the adjectives that they think apply to the person in the circle. Use classmates, characters from other books and even teachers. Have all the adjectives be happy and appropriate.
I am the leader
If students perceive themselves as leaders, they will try and do great things. So pick a leader and give them a scenario and have different outcomes based on their leadership. Have no disasters that can not be fixed.
These are just a few fun ideas that focus on the positive side of the book. If everyone is treated in the right manner, chances are they will behave in the right manner.