How to teach children about bullying awareness and prevention

Bullying, of any form (both cyber and physical), happens to students more frequently than we would like. Students of every level can experience bullying and bully others. Sometimes children start experiencing bullying as early as nursery school.

Bullying awareness

Not every bullying is physical or violent. Some students bully students without even meaning to or understanding the impact. Making derogatory comments or negative comments about another student is a form of bullying hidden under jokes and honesty. The students at the receiving end of this kind of bullying might also not understand the full extent of this kind of bullying. They might feel flustered or shamed but will laugh it off.

Bullying awareness sheds light on all kinds of bullying; how and where they can happen. Bullying can happen anywhere but is especially high in places without much adult supervision or dedicated control. This makes the internet and online spaces a breeding ground for bullying. If comments aren’t explicitly sensitive or discriminatory, they might not be taken down. The person being bullied is left to read nasty comments about them over and over again.

Bullying awareness brings awareness to the negative effects on the student being bullied, the signs for parents and tutors to note in a bullied student and prevention measures. It also talks about the signs that show a child is being bullied.

How bullying awareness helps children who are being bullied

Students who are being bullied might find it hard to report it either because of shame or fear. They may fear retaliation or might want to protect their assailants. Teachers are taught how to handle a bullied student and take these concerns into consideration. This means the child should be free of retribution from reporting and adequate measures taken to stop the bully.

Bullying awareness encourages students to report cases of bullying either done to themselves or others. Having the school have necessary services and well-informed staff makes the student more confident to report and expect justice.

Reporting a bullying incident doesn’t have to come from the student being bullied, students who witnessed it or are friends with the victims are taught to either stand up for the student being bullied or report the incident themselves and make themselves available as witnesses. This stops bullies who count on the silence and fear of others.

How to prevent bullying

  1. Create anti-bullying policies and communicate them to staff, students and parents. There should be adequate punishment for those bullies.
  2. Teachers and parents should refrain from showing favouritism to one child over another
  3. Adult supervision when a group of students are together should be taken seriously. Students should not be left to fend for themselves
  4. A trusted teacher should be on standby for kids who are experiencing bullying to talk to.
  5. Students should be taught self-care, love and empathy.
  6. Teachers and staff should watch out for kids who are at high risk of being bullied. This includes children from a different race from a dominant race, children from less-privileged homes, children with weight issues, and children with special needs.

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