Enemy Pie Book Review

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Enemy Pie

Derek Munson

Tara King

4 - 10 years

Friendship, Problem-Solving, Bullying, Judgement, Respect

Story overview

The story is narrated by a young boy. He was looking forward to a really great summer. That was until Jeremy Ross moved into the neighborhood!!

After laughing at him when he struck him out at baseball and not inviting him to his trampoline party, Jeremy Ross became the first person on the boy's enemy list. 

He talked to his dad about his problem. His dad said he has a sure fire but secret way of getting rid of enemies. Enemy Pie!!

More...

The boy is excited by the prospect of his enemy's hair falling out or his breath turning bad but there's more to the secret plan than just pie! His dad says the key to the plan is that he had to spend the entire day playing with Jeremy if he wanted to get him off his enemy list!  

After a pretty fun day hanging out with Jeremy, the boys go inside to have dinner. As dad serves up the much anticipated enemy pie his son starts to panic. He has to stop him from eating the pie and being poisoned or something because Jeremy's actually not that bad after all!

After dinner, Jeremy invites his new friend to his house to play on his trampoline the next morning and the boy realises that he's just lost his best enemy!

Lessons 

I love how relatable and fun this book is, even for adults. We've all had times when we've jumped to conclusions about someone, thinking they didn't like us or they were a bad person. We've based our judgement on a few impersonal interactions without really getting to know them, just as the boy did with Jeremy. 

It also highlights the importance of being assertive when making friends or wanting to be included in activities. Kids can't always take it for granted that someone's going to invite them to play. Sometimes they have to step outside their comfort zone and approach the other person.  

Spending the day with Jeremy gave the boy the time he needed to discover they actually had a lot in common and that Jeremy was a pretty nice guy. 

The main lesson is a good one.. it turns out the best way to get rid of an enemy is to make them your friend!

How to use in the classroom

There are a lot of great discussions that can be initiated after reading this book. So many wonderful lessons about judgement, inclusion, kindness, friendship, respect, etc.

This is also a wonderful book for building community and addressing unkind behavior in the classroom. In my view, this is a must have in your classroom as it tackles so many important and very real issues for kids. 

  • Use at the beginning of the year when students are just getting to know one another or when a new student joins the class to remind kids of the importance of getting to know someone before judging them. 
  • Use as a springboard for discussions about issues like conflict and bullying. 
  • Use as a read-aloud for lessons on problem solving. Ask students to identify the problem in the story and explain how the problem was solved.
  • Have students rewrite the story in their own words. 
  • Ask students predict how the story might have changed if dad had used the boys enemy ingredients in the pie.
  • Have students write about a time when they turned their enemy into a friend or make up a story of how they would do it.
  • Group students to work together to make their own 'friends forever pie'.
  • Make a class pie where students contribute friendly actions. 
  • Read the book when celebrating Pi Day in March.
  • Students can complete a story map or cause and effect activity.

We just love great books with powerful lessons. If you've used one in your classroom that your students loved, please email to write a review for us. 

Disclaimer: There are some affiliate links on this site. They help fund our outreach program Nourish Network which supports disadvantaged school families in Melbourne. 


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AUTHOR: Lisa Currie - Ripple Kindness Project
Lisa is the founder of Ripple Kindness Project, a community and outreach program, and primary/elementary school curriculum. Passionate about improving well-being and reducing bullying, RIpple developed a whole school, evidence-based SEL, kindness and mindfulness curriculum to build character and emotional intelligence to nurture positive, happy and safe school communities. 

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