How to Manage Your SOCIAL POWER in Middle School

Magination. (Kid Confident: Bk. 1). Aug. 2022. 224p. Tr $16.99. ISBN 9781433838149.
Gr 4-7–This self-help book aimed at middle schoolers guides readers through difficulties in interpersonal relationships while helping them develop new skills to equalize power in situations where other kids are treating them poorly. Starting with the premise that ignoring people who treat you badly is bad advice, the book encourages readers to take action by teaching them how to restore the balance of power in a relationship and be assertive. Each section includes tips; graphics that illustrate the tips, and examples of kids dealing with each situation and how they use their skills to take back their power by communication through conversation or text. There is an effort to build agency and empower kids to handle issues on their own. While some of the graphics skew young, the message of the content is clear and reinforced through examples and opportunities for practice and reflection. All examples end up with positive resolutions, but there is much mention about the need for practice and being prepared if things don’t go well. The language is accessible, messaging consistent, and the skills shared build upon each other over the course of the book. A lengthy resources section has materials for further learning.
VERDICT In a time of rising anxiety and emphasis on SEL, this book aims to equip readers to bolster self-confidence and agency to take action for healthier relationships and selves and successfully hits the mark.

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