Be Bigger

Talking with Trees Book 2

Be Bigger Childrens Book for SEL / Character Education

A story about treating friends with respect and care even when feelings are hurt.

When a girl feels left out by her friend and her feelings get hurt, all she can think to do is hurt her friend right back. But before she can turn one mean act into two, a wise old tree steps in to help the girl find a more caring, respectful way to work out her friendship troubles. Through some honest moments and a couple chuckles, the girl learns that perseverance in difficult situations-- and being the bigger person in the face of challenges-- makes you happier in the long run.

Stunning illustrations help children work through the emotional side of friendship troubles and help them feel why we should treat others with respect. The tree uses ages-old wisdom and loving encouragement to teach children how to be the bigger person, and how to persevere and talk through problems in our friendships, even when it's hard.

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Paperback and ebook available.

Teaching Resources

Be Bigger is an excellent book for elementary social emotional learning and character education. This SEL book includes a discussion guide at the end of the book. Free worksheets, lesson plans and more elementary SEL teaching resources are available online, ready to include in your in-person or remote lessons. See teaching resources.

Discussion Guide Teaching Resources


Pages: 32
Published: 2012
Second Edition: ISBN Print: 978-0984905690 || ISBN e-book: 979-8986777641

First edition Print ISBN: 978-1477403754 || ebook: 978-0984905621

Be Bigger Childrens Book Interior Page

"I understand. Your heart and your stomach are tied up in knots. If you leave Emma out so her heart hurts too, will that help you feel better?" asked the tree.

"Not when you say it like that. That just sounds mean. But what else can I do?" pleaded the girl."

Teaching Resources

Grade Level

  • K - 4

SEL / Character Ed Topics

  • Self awareness, Social Awareness, Positive Relationships, Growth Mindset
  • Traits: Respect, Caring, Empathy, Forgiveness

Social Emotional Learning Themes

  • Helps children work through hurt feelings. Oftentimes kids are mean to each other because they don't know another way to resolve conflict in their friendships. Teaches kids how to work through friendship troubles with respect, preventing more hurt feelings and exclusion of friends.
  • Builds kids' self-confidence to talk to their friends respectfully and with perseverance--to talk about how they are feeling without being accusatory--even when it's embarrassing or hard.
  • Encourages a growth mindset, with helpful images that show kids how to persevere and grow from challenges.
  • Emotionally engaging, over-size pictures help children identify their own feelings in similar friendship situations, or to understand how others' feelings get hurt.
  • Helps prevent relational aggression bullying, which is when children exclude a friend intentionally.

Be Bigger Downloadable Resources

These are just a few of the elementary social emotional learning resources related to the children's book, Be Bigger. Explore our SEL teaching resources catalog for more options.

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Buy The Book

Be Bigger Children's Book on Respect and Perseverance

Be Bigger

Second edition: ISBN Print: 978-0-984905690 || ISBN e-book: 979-8-986777641

First Edition Print ISBN: 978-1477403754 || e-book: 978-0-984905621