Peer Pressure Starts Early in Life!

And its powerful, let’s focus that peer pressure for positive things– like playing!

I know… I know… kids need to play. We’ve all heard it before. Well, we, the parents have heard it before, but our kids? They might not have gotten that memo. In fact there are kids out there that are afraid to play. Peer pressure is a powerful thing and it starts early in life, that is why we need to be aware and help our kids use that peer pressure for positive things– like playing!

So what am I really talking about?

If you guessed “bullying”, then your partly right. The biggest thing that steals our children’s joy is fear. Fear can show up in a child’s life in many different places. The obvious one is bullies, but bullies are always so easy to identify. In some cases they even look and act like friends. The cause of this fear is gossip. Gossip creates a negative form of peer pressure, one based on fear.

Gossip makes some kids powerful and others powerless. Its painful and has the ability to not only steal joy, but play as well. Who can play and have fun when they are in the grip of fear and anxiety?

Play on the other hand, lowers anxiety, and increases joy, self assurance and are key to future success. No pressure though… right!

So what do we do about it?

We talk to our kids. Make sure we create an relationship that allows our kids to tell us what’s going on in their lives. Then we coach them on what to do when negative things arise. One way to do that is through books on the topic you are dealing with.

Is your child dealing with gossiping and fear? Then my book “The Little Yellow Llama” may help. Its a story about a little Llama that ignores the gossip and keeps on playing. Yes she is lonely and longs for friends, but this is a case where being lonely is better than being afraid.

I’m not suggesting that its healthy to leave a child in this environment, but changing class or school isn’t always an option. So we have to deal with the situation we are given. Teach your child to be the change they want to see.

If you aren’t true to yourself then what’s the point

Children who live in fear never reach their full potential. They struggle to think outside of the box, and have higher levels of anxiety over every decision they make. I know that sometimes we have to coach our kids about choosing to fit in or choosing behavior that makes them stand out, but before we do that we need to take a deeper look at what is really driving that choice?

If its picking your nose in public, then yeah, lets work on not doing that, it just makes social relationships easier. Remember I said peer pressure starts early in life and I meant it. A child picking his nose, or singing and dancing when your kid likes to singing and dancing, may seem like separate stages of life, lets rethink that. Time and place appropriateness? Yes, then lets find some common ground and go from there.

The little yellow llama didn’t just ignore what was going on around her, she made an action plan, then revised it as she went along. Things don’t always work out the first time or the 10th time, but you keep trying. That is how you are true to yourself, and how you work to a more positive tomorrow.

The only thing better than play, parents and caregivers that truly care! You show that by being aware and being involved.

Now go have some fun!

Order your copy of The Little Yellow Llama on amazon HERE.

Want more Llama’s?

Check out my free coloring page post here.

Want more books from Shannon L Mokry?

All links below take you to their Amazon pages.

Little Yellow Llama Coloring Pages

The end of the year is almost here and I have a lot of project I wanted to get done. One of those projects was my Llama book. With every book I write I try to provide a few coloring pages. This helps parents and teachers to keep a group of kids all focused. Every child learns differently and not all of them can sit still and listen. Some kids need to be moving in order to process new information. That is why coloring pages are so useful in the classroom. Coloring pages that match or coordinate with a book, allows a child to interact with the characters in the book on a new level, and reinforces the messages of the store. A win-win for teachers and parents alike. You can find the book here. (amazon link)

Is this just for teachers?

No its not. This resource is for any child that loves to color! That it has added uses is just a bonus. Kids do remember more when they interact with a concept or character in more than one way, but its okay if you child just likes Llamas (or elephants, or porcupines). Provided material that interests our children has its own set of benefits, like knowing that their parents or care giver cares about what they like. That has the biggest impact of all.

How to get the free pages

Just head on over to Teacher’s Pay Teachers by clicking here, log in and select my free Little Yellow Llama Coloring Pages It will give your the files to download from there. I want to make this as safe and easy as possible. Since I am providing these at no charge, I wanted a way for you to safely access the pages without paying for anything out of my pocket. Teacher’s Pay Teachers does that for both of us.

Want more?

You can sign up to get my new posts directly in your inbox. You can also check out my store on Teacher’s Pay Teachers and see what else is there. Have fun!

Previous Free Coloring Sheets

Free Porcupine Coloring Pages

I’m a little late with these porcupine coloring pages, but they are finally done. This is one of those times when paining an animal was way easier than making an outline! I hope your little one enjoys them along with them story, as much as mine does.

Change is good

Every month my daughter wants something knew. Those changes can be hard to keep up with, but I need to be on top of things. If I haven’t put new pages into her bag, I end up creating them on the fly. Those blank pages I keep in the bag get used up quick, and she colors them immediately. She is happy, but I don’t get a chance to copy them for future use. It seems like a wasted opportunity. I suggest marking a day on your calendar each month to change out your child’s coloring pages.

This month I’m putting in my Purple Porcupine pages. These pages go with the story book “The Little Purple Porcupine”, one of my daughters favorite readers.

How to get the free pages

Just head on over to Teacher’s Pay Teachers by clicking here, log in and select my free Porcupine Coloring Pages It will give your the files to download from there. I want to make this as safe and easy as possible. Since I am providing these at no charge, I wanted a way for you to safely access the pages without paying for anything out of my pocket. Teacher’s Pay Teachers does that for both of us.

Want more?

You can sign up to get my new posts directly in your inbox. You can also check out my store on Teacher’s Pay Teachers and see what else is there. Have fun!

Previous Free Coloring Sheets

Free Fall Coloring Pages

Fall is officially here, even if you can’t tell in Texas. Here its hot and humid, but hopefully its beautiful and crisp where you are. Bugs are still out in force but we dream of fall leaves, and see squirrels hording nuts everywhere we look. I feel inspired, how about you?

Change is in the air.

Just like the seasons, when my daughter wants changes, I need to be on top of things. One way I do that is by changing up her travel bag. I still keep a few blank pages in there, but I pull out last months unused coloring pages and file them away for later, and insert all new coloring pages. This month I’m putting in my Fall Coloring Pages.

How to get the free pages

Just head on over to Teacher’s Pay Teachers by clicking here, log in and select my free Fall Sample Coloring Pages. It will give your the files to download from there. I want to make this as safe and easy as possible. Since I am providing these at no charge, I wanted a way for you to safely access the pages without paying for anything out of my pocket. Teacher’s Pay Teachers does that for both of us.

Want more?

You can sign up to get my new posts directly in your inbox. You can also check out my store on Teacher’s Pay Teachers and see what else is there. Have fun!

Previous Free Coloring Sheets

Bubbles and the Big Race Printable Bookmarks

This one is for the fans of my Bubbles the Bubble Blowing Dragon. The bookmarks match up with his newest book “Bubbles and the Big Race”. If your not familiar with it you can read about it in another post here. Or check it out on amazon here.

Make it a treat or a reward

Bookmarks are an easy and popular treat to give to book loving kids. Even if you and your kids are not familiar with Bubbles the Bubble Blowing Dragon these book marks are sure to be a hit!

I make these a reward because I find that any gift I give is treated better if my kids think they have earned it. Try rewarding a wiggly child who manages to sit through a whole story, or better yet, reward a begging reader that reads a book to you!

Printing Instructions.

To print these bookmarks put 8.5 x 11 white cardstock into your printer and make sure it is ready to print. Then click the link above. It should pop up a new tab or page with both pages. Print as you normally would, stopping to flip the page so that it is two sided.

After printing them, cut them apart along the dotted lines and enjoy. The second side of the bookmark has a place for you or your child to right their name. That way if you have more than one child it is easy to remember who’s bookmark belongs to who.


Remember only laminate after they have colored it. Laminating isn’t required, but it does extend the life of the bookmark.

Copyright reminder

These bookmarks are free for you to print and hand out, but they are NOT for you to sale or post on any site.

You are welcome to share my blog post as long as you link it back to me and do not copy it.

Thank you!

Want more bookmarks?

  • Valentines Day bookmarks are here.
  • Dragon bookmarks for my book Bubbles and the Berry Bush are here.
  • Elephant bookmarks are here.

Free Coloring pages for Bubbles and the Big Race

Keeping kids engaged

Coloring pages are a great way to help kids stay focused. Often something as simple as a coloring page can help because the child needs to moving in order to focus on the words. Its a trick that teachers in classrooms use all the time. So its easy to see how using coloring pages outside the classroom are just as effective.

Keeping kids engaged is the biggest reason I provide coloring pages for most of my books. Kids need to be engaged to remember the lessons. The best way to do that, is provide opportunities that use as much of their brains as we can.

Other tips, ask your child questions. My books often have built in places where questions fit, don’t hesitate to stop and get your child involved in the story.

How to get the free printables

Just head on over to Teacher’s Pay Teachers, log in and select my free Bubbles and the Big Race Coloring Pages. This site hosts all of the files and makes a safe and secure place to deliver the files to you. I hope you find the site to be as easy and useful as I do.

I host all of my free coloring pages on Teacher’s Pay Teachers. Please take a moment and see what else I have to offer.

Want more?

You can sign up for my newsletter, and I’ll deliver them right to your inbox. If you want to know more about my book, you can check it out on amazon by clicking the link here. Have fun!

My next Middle Grade Novel:

“Saving Gardenia” is HERE

My newest middle grade novel is now available! “Saving Gardenia” is book two in my Gemstone Dragons Series. Its available as a Kindle book and a softcover book. The amazon link is here.

Natural Consequeses

“Saving Gardenia” expands on the idea that keeping secrets causes drama.

In book one, “Escaping Gardenia”, the main characters are both keeping secrets and it makes it difficult to form a friendship. One of them finally opens up, but before the other can do the same, life intervenes and his secret exposed.

Book two, “Saving Gardenia” covers the fall out of having your secret exposed instead of sharing them.

All of this on the background of a fantasy novel, in which two kids are working to help other people, figure out who they are and who they want to be. Oh, and dealing with a magical force that has an agenda all its own.

Target Audience

Middle Grade books are a very misunderstood category. I believe its because different regions have there own names for this age group. Middle Grade does NOT mean Middle School.

Now that I have the cleared up what does middle grade mean? Middle grade is for kids aged 8-12. So upper elementary kids from 2nd grade through early 7th grade. That’s a pretty big range and obviously not every middle grade novel is going to be right for every 8-12 yr old kid.

Encouraging a love of reading

Try exposing your young people to a wide variety of books in order to find the niche that resonates with them. I write fantasy books, as a parent if that’s not your thing then it might be easy to skip those for your kids. I encourage you to reconsider that. Fantasy books encourage a child’s imagination in ways other books do not. I also encourage mysteries and historical books even though I personal don’t read mysteries, and I have a love hate relationship with historical books.

My kids are often drawn to similar books to what I like. Thankfully, early exposure to a wide variety of books means they read a much more varied selection than I ever did. This not only expands their imaginations, like I mentioned before, it gives them a larger vocabulary, and a broader understanding of how other people think and interact with each.

More books by me, Shannon L. Mokry

Good Sportsmanship is for Everyone

What is the first thing that comes to mind when you hear ‘good sportsmanship”? Sports? How about games? If so your not alone, however good sportsmanship is about so much more than being nice on a sports field. It’s about attitude and attitude is important everywhere.

A good attitude helps with our family relationships, friendships, school and work. Think about the attributes of your family and classmates or co-workers. What stands out as making some a joy to be around or a person you avoid? Attitude.

So What IS Good Sportsmanship?

This is what I found when I searched for good sportsmanship in google. Is this really all that is meant by good sportsmanship? I don’t think so but read the quotes and decide for yourself.

Good sportsmanship is when people who are playing or watching a sport treat each other with respect. This includes players, parents, coaches, and officials.”

https://kidshealth.org/en/teens/sportsmanship.html

Sportsmanship is defined as ethical, appropriate, polite and fair behavior while participating in a game or athletic event. When a basketball player plays by the rules, is fair to his opponent and is gracious when he loses, this is an example of sportsmanship. YourDictionary definition and usage example.” –

https://www.yourdictionary.com/sportsmanship

I believe that good sportsmanship is so much more.

Attitude is Everything

In competition and in all areas of life, having a good attitude makes the difference between a good day and a bad day. When people are competing this is especially important, but what if you don’t realize your competing? That is where good sportsmanship bleeds into everyday life.

When you eat a meal you have your favorites right? Do you also have your favorite preparer? It can be a favorite restaurant or an Auntie that makes it better than anyone else. Your kids only like your spaghetti and no else’s. You didn’t know it was a competition, but how you handle these situations is showing good sportsmanship in everyday life.

Do you have a favorite desert, but you never ask for it, because the person who makes it best boasts to much, or it makes your mom feel bad that you don’t like her version? That’s an example of how a negative attitude or bad sportsmanship and affect everyday life as well.

How do I teach my kids Good Sportsmansip?

Its true that you can’t control anyone but yourself. Not even our kids. So if you choose to be kind, to be nice, and to be helpful, then you are teaching the best way possible, by example.

Other ways to teach this concept is through story telling and books. That is why I wrote “Bubbles and the Big Race”. With stories like this, kids can see this concept in action, without feeling lectured or called out. They can see what examples of what bad sportsmanship looks like, and how it makes other people feel. Making the connections between bad attitudes and other peoples feelings increase things like empathy.

Empathy is a big social skill so lets encourage it.

You can get your copy of “Bubbles and the Big Race” by clicking here(amazon link)

Activities for “Bubbles and the Big Race”

What else have I written about?

What’s next?

The future is hard to pin down but I have several things planned out for the next year. Here is a lists of dates I have set right now. I’ll update them as things change.

  • The Little Yellow Llama – November 2019
  • The Little Green Fox – February 2020
  • Take a Walk on the Beach – April 2020
  • Take a Walk in the Rain – July 2020
  • The Middlest- October 2020
  • Restoring Gardenia -Fall 2020

*sample illustrations by Callan Clark

Free Elephant Bookmarks

This one is for the fans of my book “The Little Pink Elephant“. If your not familiar with it you can read about it in another post here. Or check it out on amazon here.

Make it a treat or a reward

Bookmarks are an easy and popular treat to give to book loving kids. Even if you and your kids are not familiar with my little pink elephant these book marks are sure to be a hit!

I make these a reward because I find that any gift I give is treated better if my kids think they have earned it. Try rewarding a wiggly child who manages to sit through a whole story, or better yet, reward a begging reader that reads a book to you!

Printing Instructions.

To print these bookmarks put 8.5 x 11 white cardstock into your printer and make sure it is ready to print. Then click the link above. It should pop up a new tab or page with both pages. Print as you normally would, stopping to flip the page so that it is two sided.

After printing them, cut them apart along the dotted lines and enjoy. The second side of the bookmark has a place for you or your child to right their name. That way if you have more than one child it is easy to remember who’s bookmark belongs to who.


Remember only laminate after they have colored it. Laminating isn’t required, but it does extend the life of the bookmark.

Copyright reminder

These bookmarks are free for you to print and hand out, but they are NOT for you to sale or post on any site.

You are welcome to share my blog post as long as you link it back to me and do not copy it.

Thank you!

Want more bookmarks?

  • Valentines Day bookmarks are here.
  • Dragon Bookmarks for my book Bubbles and the Berry Bush are here.

Free Cactus and Coloring Pages

Summer is almost here and that makes me think of heat. Well this summer my daughter and I hope to spend a lot of time with a new friend. That new friend happens to be crazy about succulents. So this months succulents where inspired by her. My daughter, of course, is getting lessons in what the differences are between the different kinds of succulents, and how to keep them alive and thriving. As always I like to provide lots of reminders of the important things we are learning. Coloring sheets do this is a very kid friendly and fun way. Enjoy!

How to get the free printables

Just head on over to Teacher’s Pay Teachers, log in and select my free Cactus Coloring Pages. It will give your the files to download from there. I want to make this as safe and easy as possible. Since I am providing these at no charge, I wanted a way for you to safely access the pages without paying for anything out of my pocket. Teacher’s Pay Teachers does that for both of us.

Want more?

Don’t forget to signup for my newsletter, I’ll send links to all of my new content directly to your inbox. You can also check out my store on Teacher’s Pay Teachers and see what else is there. Have fun!