Bullying in the Book, Yaqui Delgado Wants to Kick Your Ass by Meg Medina

It all starts with the feeling that makes the victims’ hearts pound and knees tremble. The feeling that makes them want to shrink to nothing on the inside and hide is known as fear. Victims of bullying are very familiar with this feeling, being physically, verbally, and emotionally abused by their peers. Bullying is one of the major conflicts in high school. It happens everyday such as getting shoved into a locker, being called derogatory names, and so on. In the book Yaqui Delgado Wants to Kick Your Ass by Meg Medina, Piddy plays the role of the victim.

The book begins when Piddy’s friend tells her that the school bully, Yaqui Delgado, wants to kick her ss”. Why? Because Piddy shakes her “ass” too much when she walks, and Yaqui just doesn’t like her. One day Yaqui decided to throw a milk carton at her. This is the first instant when Piddy began to feel fear gripping her heart.

The once perfect Astudent dropped schoolwork and completely changed into a different person. So why should this book be taught in eighth grade?

It was even banned in Virginia’s Cumberland Middle School for it’s inappropriate language shown in the title. Despite this, Yaqui Delgado Wants to Kick Your Ass should be taught in eighth grade because students can learn not to make the same mistakes as Piddy, the effects of being bullied, and how one person can make a difference in a victim’s life. First, this book should be taught to eighth graders so they don’t make the same mistakes as Piddy, such as not telling anyone about being bullied.

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Piddy makes the mistake of not telling her best friend, Mitzi, about the situations she’s in when she says, “Nothing’s wrong, Mitzi. Nothing at all… Everything is just perfect. Why don’t you just forget me and enjoy your new life?” (159).

The quote clearly shows the lie that Piddy is living in, which could ultimately make her situation worse and destroy her emotionally. Piddy is consumed by fear, and she does not realize that Mitzi could comfort her. Not only that, but Mitzi could help her escape the fear and offer her solutions to end her problem. Sadly, Piddy does not make this choice, and takes all the burden on herself. If this book were to be taught in schools, teachers could address this problem to students and educate them about how talking about issues to a friend or someone else, such as an adult, is a solution to end bullying. The friend can help them emotionally and help them choose the right choice to handle the situation. This is very important for teachers to address since it is very common in high school, and students tend to take all the burden on themselves. This work by Meg Medina strongly shows the importance of reaching out for help, an important lesson for future high school students. Secondly, eighth graders would see the effects of being bullied if this book were to be taught in schools. All it took was a milk carton and some words that ignited overwhelming fear for Piddy. It brought her to the point where she didn’t go to school for a couple of days. She also began to drop schoolwork and her relationship with her parents dramatically worsened. This is evident when Piddy observers that, “In all my life, Ma has never slapped me, but her hand comes across my face hard. I’m so enraged that before I can stop myself, I give her a shove back” (193).

This quote clearly shows that their mother-daughter relationship was crumbling. Just because one person bullied Piddy, it resulted in messing up their family dynamic. Teachers can show their students how detrimental bullying can be in one’s life. They can show that just like what happened to Piddy, bullying can isolate students from their family and distract them from education. This is very critical for students to know because grades in high school highly affect one’s future, and a single bully shouldn’t destroy it. This book is a prime example of the effects bullying has on a high school student, which all students entering high school should be aware of. Lastly, by reading and discussing this book, eighth graders will realize how one person can make a huge difference in a victim’s life. Piddy’s lunch buddy, Rob, noticed that she was getting targeted by Yaqui. He realized how severe it was getting and anonymously reported it to SUSO, or Stand Up/Speak Out, the school’s “help hotline”. The principal decided to transfer Piddy back to her original school. From this point on, Piddy’s life went back to how it was before she was bullied. Piddy realizes that her life is finally restored when she says, “I know I’ve found my rhythm at last–strong and simple, constant and mine” (260). This clearly demonstrates how Piddy is back on track. Words like “my”, “constant”, and “mine” show that she can finally can be herself once again. Her whole life was given back just because one person, Rob, decided to report this.

Not only did Yaqui make a significant difference in Piddy’s life (for the worse), but a single person, Rob, who decided to help did as well. This book will help show eighth graders how important it is to help a victim of bullying and how one person can change a victim’s life. Many high schoolers stand aside when bullying is happening right front of their eyes. This clearly needs to be changed, and teachers should educate eighth graders to take action when someone getting bullied. This book will help kids understand how one person can make a positive change. In conclusion, Yaqui Delgado Wants to kick Your Ass should be taught in eighth grade because they learn not to make the same mistakes Piddy, the effects of being bullied, and how one person can make a difference in a victim’s life. This is crucial because bullying is a major conflict in high school. It’s such a major topic, but nothing is really done with it. Yes, schools have anti-bullying assemblies, but does that really help the victims? But if eighth graders read this book, he/she can connect to the book and realize that he/she must take action. One action can bring light back into someone’s life.

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Bullying in the Book, Yaqui Delgado Wants to Kick Your Ass by Meg Medina. (2022, Sep 30). Retrieved from https://paperap.com/bullying-in-the-book-yaqui-delgado-wants-to-kick-your-ass-by-meg-medina/

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