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One day my daughter jumped in the car after school and the first words out of her mouth were, “mom, I don’t feel safe at school anymore. It should be a place where I feel safe!”
Immediately, I felt concern and had to hear the whole story. It was her first encounter observing a group of students bullying another. It shocked her. She saw a group of boys pressing another boy and she didn’t understand why it was happening.
Fortunately, her school is a school that prides itself on teaching students respect, accountability, integrity, service, and excellence. They knew how to respond. But tackling the issue can be tough. There are different things to consider – parent support, school culture, diversity, tolerance – it goes on and on and most ideas take a while to get started.
In this post, I am going to provide 5 ideas of things you can do TODAY to stop bullying in your classroom. These tips can be implemented as soon as you get back to school.
BONUS: And as a “Thank You” for checking out Project Stella Resources, we want to give you a Bonus!
Use the wheel to introduce Daily Acts of Kindness in a fun way! Then your students can reflect on what they did.
Great way to begin and end each school day!
“What a great way to encourage positive relationships in the classroom! Thank you!”
“Perfect to keep next to my desk for easy grab and go!”
“I like that these instructions come from the wheel, rather than from myself or another adult. It seems to motivate students from a higher, more altruistic level. Thanks for this!”
New here? I have these blog posts to help you help transform your home, school, and community with kids who Radiate Outrageous Compassion & Kindness.
Stop bullying by discussing it in a classroom meeting
Having a classroom meeting is often overlooked since there is so much pressure for teachers to have instructional time. But when addressing the issue of bullying in the classroom, it is essential.
1. It lets your students know that you are not afraid to address the issue.
2. It brings everyone’s attention to the behavior that is happening and lets them know that you have noticed it. Bullying in your classroom will not be ignored.
3. It allows you to introduce tools to the classroom such as a box for them to report what it going on anonymously or daily journals to complete when they come into the classroom.
Get the Guide to Classroom Meetings in the Schools that R.O.C.K. Program.
Stop bullying by sharing personal stories
You can share personal stories of bullying during a classroom meeting or incorporating it into a lesson (fluency exercises, literature circles, history). These stories can focus on how other people have addressed the issue of bullying, how it has been confronted, or how someone has felt.
Often students don’t know what to do about bullying because they feel alone, isolated, or ignored. These personal stories, help students feel like they are not alone. There are many books out there that provide very real solutions and can give your students hope.
One solution is having a Buddy Bench. Start by reading about this and other stories available in 52 Kids who R.O.C.K. Every Day: Inspiring stories of young people who Radiate Outrageous Compassion & Kindness.
Stop bullying by creating a kindness club
I think more and more schools should have a Kindness Club or a Service Club because it not only shifts the culture of your school and celebrates the value of service, but it provides an inclusive club that anyone has the skills and talents to be part of. A Kindness Club does not require you to have straight A’s or an athletic talent or stage presence or the money to purchase uniforms and equipment.
A Kindness Club or a Service Club can also help students focus on learning valuable life skills, provides leadership experiences, and get involved in the community working towards positive efforts.
You can stop bullying in your classroom by giving your class the project to start the Kindness Club for your school. It keeps them accountable and sets the expectation that if they are doing this project, everyone will be paying attention.
Check out my recent post 5 Reasons you need to start a Kindness Club at your school or in your community today
Stop bullying by celebrating what is unique
A child is often bullied because he or she is considered different. Could be because of an interest, social skills, abilities, sexuality, family background, religion, – even dreams for the future.
For some reason, these differences may be criticized instead of celebrated. You can change this mindset by something small and creating a classroom that celebrates what makes each person unique. You don’t have to go in full force and “out” people for the differences that are at the root of the bullying. You can start more general about celebrating what makes a person unique with their interests and talents.
TIP: I have often found that if you share stories of successful people, millionaires/sports figures/celebrities, that became successful because of something that may them unique – it opens up the conversation a little more.
Get the What makes your Unique makes you Money lesson plan in the Schools that R.O.C.K. Program.
Stop bullying by focusing the day on kindness
Bullying is the opposite of Kindness. Bullying is the opposite of Compassion. Bullying by young children occurs for different reasons but usually because it is an expression of frustration or an expression of something the child has been taught through experience.
To stop bullying it takes shifting your students mindset. You can start this by having a focus on kindness and how students look for situations to be kind. Something you can do TODAY is use the Daily Acts of Kindness Classroom Wheel. I’m even offering it as a Free Bonus – Download it right now and get started.
Inspire your students to Radiate Outrageous Compassion & Kindness through
52 Inspiring stories
- One 10 year old started a nonprofit to deliver toys and books to kids in waiting rooms at hospitals needing cancer treatment.
- One 9 year old decided that for his birthday he only wanted gifts that he could donate to other kids.
- One 10 year old is selling 5000 boxes of cookies to win a Disney Trip that she will donate to a sick child.