Peer Pressure Gauge

Help Kids Learn How to Recognize and Resist Negative Peer Pressure

Author: Julia Cook
Illustrator: Anita DuFalla
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Norbert is a "naumuh" (“human” spelled backwards), and he and his classmates, Nelda, Buster, Tommy, and Stewey, enjoy eating everything with jelly beans on it!

One day, Norbert's teacher challenges his class to try something new: a bite of anchovy jelly bean pizza. The teacher is trying to create a powerful lesson for students on what it’s like to feel pressured, what it’s like to place pressure on others, and what the potential consequences (good or bad) could be.

When not everyone conforms to the challenge, the teacher starts sweetening the pot…extra recess, assignment passes, and other rewards that students crave! Tempted by the teacher’s offer, Norbert’s classmates take the plunge and try the anchovy jelly bean pizza one by one. But when Norbert is less than eager to follow suit, he gets his first taste of what it's like to be on the receiving end of peer pressure as his classmates continue to pressure him to try the pizza. Just one itty-bitty bite!

Readers witness Norbert's internal deliberation as he struggles with whether or not to give into the pressure as the teacher continues to “sweetens the pot.” Norbert describes in detail how it feels to have his peer pressure gauge continue to rise and rise and rise up to like...a GAZILLION! It’s a nerve-wracking feeling that makes him feel like his head is going to explode. As the pressure builds, Norbert faces mounting anger from his classmates, who say he’ll no longer have any friends if he doesn’t take even a teeny weeny, itty-bitty bite. But steadfast Norbert demonstrates to his classmates that if he is able to stay strong and let his inner voice shine, he will feel better about himself, and may avoid some hard-to-live-with consequences!

Peer Pressure Gauge is the fourth installment of the popular Building Relationships book series which supports social emotional learning. Educators, parents, and children alike will enjoy this imaginative story of how escalating peer pressure feels as they learn the skills necessary to triumph over the pressure to conform. Peer Pressure Gauge is the recipient of the prestigious Mom's Choice Award. Tips for parents and educators are located at the end of the story to further address the fact that negative peer pressure can cause many difficulties. 31 pgs.

The Building Relationships book series also includes:

Published by Boys Town Press

ISBN: 978-1-934490-48-8