Bullying is just plain wrong. It hurts the person who is bullied, and the bullies usually live to regret their cruel behavior. No one wins. In “Sticks and Stones,” the featured story from the July/August 2013 issue of Stone Soup, 13-year-old author Nisha Klein manages to turn her bad experience at summer camp into a beautifully written, sensitive story. We see firsthand all the little ways in which Nisha’s cabin mates put her down and try to make her feel bad. They exclude her from their conversations, run away when they see her coming — one girl even tells her she should die! At first, Nisha wonders if there is something wrong with her. Like everyone, she wants to be liked. She gets depressed. Then one day, while practicing archery, Nisha hits a bullseye, and it sparks a revelation. There’s nothing wrong with her! She doesn’t need the approval of these mean girls. Camp is over and she can return home to her friends, saddened but a little wiser. Have you seen or experienced bullying at school or camp? Perhaps Nisha’s story will help you see how wrong it is and inspire you to speak up against it if you see it.
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