Thursday, February 23, 2012

Standing Up to Bullies

Fourth graders are continuing to learn about bullying.  They are doing a really great job at defining that:

 Bullying = Danger

Bullying is:
On Purpose to Hurt
It Happens Over and Over Again
An Imbalance of Power

The five types of bullying are:
Physical
Verbal
Social
Intimidation
Cyberbullying

Fourth graders have gotten so good at these definitions that I choose students to teach the review portion of the bullying lessons.  They really love doing this and it is a great way for them to work on their presentation skills.

A critical aspect of bullying education is helping students identify strategies to deal with a bullying situation. 

I used the book Confessions of a Former Bully to provide students with strategies for standing up to a bully.  They love this book because it is written from a bully's perspective.

Strategies for standing up to a bully: 
1.  Say "Stop It" in a strong and assertive voice.
2.  Walk Away from the bully.
3.  Say "Huh, Whatever, So, Who Cares"
4.  Change The Subject.
5.  Act Silly or Goofy
6.  Turn An Insult Into a Compliment
7.  Agree

When I taught these strategies I advised students only to use the strategies they were comfortable with.  For example, not everyone might feel comfortable agreeing with the bully.  Second, I explained that these strategies might not always work in the moment, and that they don't always stop the bullying.  It is still important to tell a trusted adult that the bullying is going on.  

Students were given scenerios and asked to provide examples of how they could use these strategies.  They then practiced by role playing in front of the class.  The lesson went very well!  This week I asked students if any of them had tried the strategies in real life situations.  Many of them had!  My follow up question of course was, "did it work?" and most of them responded with "yes." Thier responses resulted in one happy school counselor!

1 comments:

Rick said...

Great stuff! We just read My Secret Bully, and I'll present Confessions in a few weeks.

Rick Scheibner
http://counselor.rickscheibner.net

PS Would it be possible to open up your comments to name/url format? I rarely use the other options for my professional work.

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