This week we continued our work on bullying awareness. For this lesson, we are focusing on the bystanders, the people who see bullying happen, and their role in helping victims of bullying. When researchers study bullying by asking students what they would do if they saw someone being bullied, the most frequent response is that they would stand up to the student doing the bullying. However, when bullying is actually taking place, bystanders rarely confront the bully. The reality is that bullying is scary and it is hard to stand up and put oneself in the position of possibly becoming the next target.
What, then, can bystanders do? As a class, we discussed safer possibilities that can help the student being targeted without having to say anything to the person bullying. Some ideas students generated include:
· Get help from an adult
· Help the targeted student walk away from the bullying
· Make the targeted student feel included
· Say something nice to the targeted student
· Encourage the targeted student to reach out to an adult
Students took these strategies and used them to create skits about supporting students who are being bullied. They also practiced language they could use if they felt comfortable speaking up to a bullying student.
If you can, please remind your children about the important role of bystanders in a bullying situation and the range of choices they can make to help.
Thank you for your help supporting this important lesson.
School Counselor, Armstrong Elementary School
PH: 508-836-7760 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org