Going back to school each year is a crazy time for teens and tweens. They are concerned about their social lives, their studies and keeping up with all of it. Here are seven nonfiction books that might be able to help.
Help with Friends, Speaking Up and Understanding Yourself
1. Friends and Frenemies: The Good, the Bad, and the Awkward by Jennifer Castle and Deborah Reber
Friends and Frenemies, written for middle school tweens, helps them learn the ins and outs of friendship. This very colorful tween-friendly book includes quizzes, polls, and other fun interactive elements. The chapters in this book are
- What is a Friend?
- Making Friends
- When Friends Fight
- Gossip and Rumors
- Helping a Friend
- Opposite sex friendships
- Long Distance Friendships
- Ending a Friendship
I highly recommend this book for all tweens in middle school, popular or not, male or female. And it wouldn’t hurt for young teens to read it also. (will be published 8/25/15)
2. Speak Up: A Guide to Having Your Say and Speaking Your Mind by Halley Bondy
Another great book for tweens, that could be useful to girls in their teens and even many young adults. Culture teaches girls at an early age to be sheepish, unsure and apologetic. In middle school is when girls first begin to feel voiceless. Speak Up tells young girls that what they have to say and what they think are important. The book uses real-life examples, interactive exercises and lists to help these female students recognize examples from their own lives. (will be published 10/6/15)
3. Heads Up Psychology by Marcus Weeks
While Heads Up Psychology makes the subject of psychology easier to learn, that is not nearly all it is. This book was written specifically for teens and deals mostly with questions that teens are concerned with. The sections of the book (each include many chapters) are:
- What Makes Me Tick?
- What Does My Brain Do?
- How Does My Mind Work?
- What Makes Me Unique?
- Where Do I Fit In?
Help with Smartphones, Social Media and always being Connected
Unplugged: How to Live Mindfully in a Digital World by Orianna Fielding
Unplugged is big book. Not what most people that are being told to unplug a little want to read. However, what I love about this book is that it is beautiful book with great pictures and many lists. So you can skim Unplugged and enjoy it and still learn a great deal. Some of the lists in this book are:
- 12 Signs of Digital Overload
- 8 Positive Steps for Families to Reconnect with each other
- 16 Simple Ways to Pause and Embrace the Art of Slow
Unplugged is written mostly for parents and other adults, however I think that it would be a good idea to share this book with your teens.
Get Your Nose Out of That Smartphone…Please! by Judy Cunniff
This book is the opposite of the one above. It is a short book that can be read in one sitting. There are no pictures, lists or anything to distract from the author’s message. And I love that she says that words used on social media are permanent right on the cover of the book.
Back to School Books For Science Lovers
Periodic Thoughts: 30 Postcards for Your Inner Science Nerd by Julie Huffman and Jenavieve Brown
Periodic Thoughts is beautiful print book filled with 30 science related postcards. However, I think that many teens will want to keep the book in one piece. There are colorful pictures and sayings on one side of each page, and information on the back. This book would make a great gift to give science lovers of any age.
Nerd Journal by Julie Huffman and Jenavieve Brown
The Nerd Journal is more than it looks like at first glance. Upon opening, it looks like an empty journal to be written in. However, when you look closely, along the bottom of the pages are running facts about science. And on most pages, one word is spelled out using the letters of various elements. There is also a pocket in the back cover of the book to keep items.
Do you think that any of your teens or tweens would enjoy or learn from any of these books? Do they need help with friends or have trouble speaking up? Do they love science? What about you? Do you or your kids need to unplug?