Simon's hook - October Project Cornerstone update
Tue, Nov 6 8:45pm
West Valley Elementary


During October, Project Cornerstone readers read in your child’s classroom the book Simon’s Hook by Karen Gedig Burnett. In this book, Simon is teased because he’s having a “bad hair day.” Simon’s Hook helps children learn that there are many ways to respond to teasing and offers several examples of ways that kids can empower themselves and avoid becoming a victim of someone else’s hurtful behavior.

  In the book, Simon’s neighbor, Grandma Rose, teaches him ways to avoid being a target of his friends who are exhibiting bucket dipper behaviors. She offers five strategies to help Simon avoid taking the bait:

  •  Do little or nothing—don’t react!
  • Pretend to agree with the bully’s hook.
  • Change the subject to distract the bully.
  • Laugh at the hook and make a joke of it.
  • Stay away from the hooks and swim in another part of the sea.

 Each of these strategies is a valuable skill to protect kids from being hurt and to help them swim free!

 To reinforce this lesson, please ask your child to explain these terms:

  • Don’t take the bait.”
  • “Swim free!”

 When you discuss teasing and bullying at home, please use these terms and strategies to remind children about their choices and power in a teasing situation. To learn more about Simon’s Hook, you can visit Grandma Rose’s website at

 By teaching our children how to navigate friendships, peer relationships, and social cruelty, we create a stronger school community where all students feel safe and know that they belong.


Lunchtime Project Cornerstone is another way we support learning. Once a month the students can engage in a project related to the book. This month they practiced strategies to respond to teases and “swim free”. Check it out – hung behind the office by the blacktop.


Thank you for supporting Project Cornerstone!