Last week, I gave you information on why we need to create bully free classrooms. This week we are focusing on how to create them. Yes, creating a bully free classroom and school is a possibility. A zero tolerance plan for bullies can be a reality. How? First, set clear expectations. Next, create relationships within your classroom and expand to include the entire school. Lastly, use resources to reinforce those ideas!
Setting Clear Expectations
- Be nice! This could serve as your only rule. Be nice to what? People, equipment, the list goes on and on.
- Reward positive behavior.
- Remind students of expectations after long breaks.
Create Lasting Relationships
- Students need to connect with others. I have noticed misbehavior students decrease when I know more about my students than their name! What do they like? What do they do after school? This is an ongoing conversation, not just a one-time questionnaire they fill out at the beginning of the year.
- Develop a school-wide plan to include the entire staff to help build those relationships. Every students should have an adult within the school that they can go to talk about their problems!
Lastly, Finding Resources that reinforce expectations and relationships
With the help of Big Universe, you will find resources that will help you begin conversations with your students about Bully Prevention in your school. Check these out!
Primary –Attack of the Bully Bug Jeff Dinardo (author), Jim Paillot (illustrator) ISBN: 9781936163533 From the publisher, “The bugs in Bugville have had it with bullies! How will they solve the problem? Bullying: Helping Through Teamwork.”
Intermediate– Why are you picking on me? How to deal with bullies. John Burstein (author) ISBN: 9780778797913 From the publisher, “Bullying is one of the scariest and potentially damaging negative behaviors children can face. Slim Goodbody helps young students learn to recognize the different kinds of bullying and presents strategies for dealing with even the toughest situations.”
Middle School–Friend or Foe? Plays about Bullying Catherine Gourlay (author) SERIES: Get into Character ISBN: 9780778791263 From the publisher, “Bullying is about power and controlling another person. The two reader’s theater-style plays in this book look at bullying first from two different viewpoints, that of the victim, and that of the bully. Young people will learn how to recognize it and how to change it.”
Start the discussion today and come up with other ideas with your students. We love to hear from our readers, how do you create a bully free classroom or school?