Helping Little Ones Understand Bullying

Screen Shot 2013-10-26 at 12.38.43 PMThe concept of bullying can be hard for young elementary students to understand. They clearly recognize when something is mean, but once introduced to the word “bullying,” tend overgeneralize the term. Before you know it, everything becomes “bullying,” even small conflicts in which both participants share equal responsibility! In order to help kids understand what bullying is, you have to provide them with a definition. But figuring out how to translate “is done on purpose to hurt, happens over and over, involves an imbalance of power, AND is upsetting” can be a challenge for the little ones.  Continue reading

No Time? No Problem! Last Minute Bullying Prevention Month Ideas

 

Screen Shot 2013-10-05 at 7.34.21 PMI’m surprised the truant officer from the Department of Blogging hasn’t been pounding on my door. Yup, I’ve been absent for a long time, but I’m hoping it will be an excused absence. I have been doing my homework, although I haven’t turned it in! If you need help catching up on your “homework” and haven’t had any time at all to plan, it’s still not too late to organize some activities for National Bullying Prevention month. And guess what, if October doesn’t work at your school, you can choose a different month to focus on bullying prevention. (Our Mix It Up Day will be mixing itself into a different season.) See below for some simple ideas and free resources. But first, my excuse. Continue reading

Bullying Prevention Through (Free) Songs, Posters, Videos, Dance, and More

Screen Shot 2013-08-19 at 7.53.19 PMJust in time to help you plan for National Bullying Prevention Month (October) or classroom or group activities anytime of the year  – some free resources from willUstand, Pacer, the We Do Listen Foundation, and more!

I’ve written before about willUstand, a wonderful bullying prevention initiative started by a middle school student in my district that features Stand, a crowd-sourced music video, and downloadable ($1) song. Now willUstand has added eleven different free, downloadable bullying prevention posters for elementary, middle, and high school settings. (They will be adding more posters in the future.) Here are a few examples: Continue reading

New Bullying Prevention Video – Featuring My Town!

Screen Shot 2013-03-20 at 2.59.40 PMI am so proud (and a little teary) about a new bullying prevention video, Be an Upstander, Not a Bystander, that came out today! This public service announcement features my town’s police and fire departments, current and former students, and my awesome colleagues Franklin, a fifth grade teacher, and Amy, my counseling partner (and amazing first-year school counselor). Be an Upstander, Not a Bystander would be great to show students anywhere, but could also be an inspiration for your school and town to do something similar. Continue reading

Stand: The Anti-Bullying Anthem

Screen Shot 2013-02-21 at 11.05.38 AMIt’s finally out – the crowd-sourced music video of Stand! The singer, Charleigh Gere is a middle school student in our district, who decided to take a stand herself and do something to help other kids stop bullying. The video is comprised of clips of students from all over the world singing, dancing, acting, writing, and signing, united to end bullying. My counseling partner Amy worked with some of her 3rd and 5th grade groups to create clips, which they submitted for the video (some of them even made the cut!). Amy and I use the song (available in iTunes) in our bullying prevention units  and the kids LOVE it! And now here’s the video, which will be a great addition to any lesson about bullying! Continue reading

Goodbye Bully Machine, Hello Integrated Learning!

Screen Shot 2013-02-19 at 3.57.15 PMI’m always tweaking and working to improve my lessons and units – I want to make sure that they’re meaningful and engaging, and that kids are learning and applying what they’ve learned in real-life settings. Also, I am addicted to just love figuring out how to incorporate new ideas and techniques! (Which may have something to do with why my to-do list is completely ridiculous.)  Most recently, I set my sights on my fourth grade bullying prevention unit. Even though this unit has been impactful and well-received, I wanted to: (1) experiment with how integrating technology and art might expand kids’ understanding about bullying; (2) see how this could help me assess student learning; and (3) increase my knowledge about how best to address the Common Core standards within the counseling curriculum. It was a LOT of work, but the outcome has been amazing! Continue reading

Goodbye Bully Machine on Stage!

Screen Shot 2012-11-30 at 11.13.09 PMThis year I decided to rework our fourth grade bullying prevention unit so that it builds upon the visually rich and thought-provoking book Goodbye Bully Machine by Debbie Fox. We’re in the midst of it now, and it’s going really well. I’ll share all the lessons and resources once we’ve completed the unit, but am so excited that I wanted to share this piece of it right away! Today our fourth graders put on a play based on the book, and you can see it in this video. (It runs a little more than 6 minutes.) Continue reading

Austin Police Tell Kids, “It Gets Better!”

Here’s a moving video from the Austin, Texas Police Department and the It Gets Better project. In it, uniformed officers, victims’ advocates, and other police department employees share their experiences, encouragement, and support for young LGBT people. Central to the video is a powerful and direct statement from Art Acevedo, the Chief of Police in Austin, about acceptance for all, regardless of differences: Continue reading

Cyberbullying Infographic

Here’s a wonderfully clear and informative  infographic about cyberbullying.  The infographic is based on data gathered through McAfee’s 2012 Teen Internet Behavior Study. I’m definitely going to be incorporating it into my cyberbullying lessons, and thought you might like to do so too! Continue reading

Will U Stand?

My heart swells when kids take action to make the world a better place for others. Today it’s practically bursting because of willUstand, a bullying prevention initiative by a local Vermonter, 12-year-old, Charleigh Gere, who is using music to share the message that “bystanders can make a difference and that when someone stands for another, they gift hope.” I am so excited about willUstand for several reasons (freebie alert!): Continue reading