When I was in second grade I often dealt with a bully from another class. The next year he apologized and said it was because he was jealous of my ‘boyfriend’ who by then had moved on. read more →

A teacher in New York used the crumpled paper exercise to show her students the last impact that bullying can have. read more →

My message to kids who bully other kids is:
You know it’s wrong! What’s really going on? Try not to make somebody else’s life miserable because you are.

– Joe Nichols

Let me begin by saying that I detest the ‘Bully,’ label. Bully is a loaded word. It provokes an emotional reaction of some kind to any person that you mention it to. From outrage to fear, everyone has an opinion. Bully Vs Victim, simple right? I disagree.

For me, this is not simple. Varying levels of light and shade must be considered if we are going to be successful in helping to reduce incidents of nastiness in schools. For a child to carry the label of bully is akin to a prison sentence that will haunt them for his or her school career with little chance of parole. To have the bully label surgically thrust upon you implies that it is a fundamental part of the person that you are, it’s who people are therefore expecting you to be. What a burden for a child to carry. To say that a child is displaying bullying behaviour is so much more positive because behaviours can easily be changed and disposed of so it gives everyone involved hope for change.

I am one of these really irritating people who holds the belief that there is good in 99% of the population and often in places that we are not expecting. My mission in life has always been to try and identify with people and find common-ground. I love words and believe that good quality communication, partnered with love and an attempt at understanding, can help to ease any situation. As a parent to four beautiful babies, I have found this to be extremely challenging at times, as I will explain. read more →

“People bully to distract themselves from their own issues.”

When I was younger I was a little naive. I thought that once you get out of school, everyone suddenly grows up. I thought that everyone would learn how to put aside petty differences and just get along.

Wow, was I wrong! Nothing could be further from the truth. Getting older – that just happens, but growing up is a choice. And some people don’t actively make that choice.

After finishing school, I got my first full time job. Everything was going great. I had made some new friends and was enjoying my time. Then my co-workers found out that I was from the “wrong side” of town.

Bullying-All-Alone

They started to leave me out of conversations and other things that they were doing. Soon my co-workers started to make unkind remarks and verbally attack me. At the time I would have preferred it if they just kept leaving me out.

I was only 18 so I wasn’t really sure about how to deal with it. I was also in shock that it was even happening. After all, bullying stopped when school finished, didn’t it? read more →

SEL a must to reduce bullying.
I’ve heard it said too many times… that social and emotional learning shouldn’t be taught at school because that’s a job for parents.

Good in theory, but in reality, there are many children who lack supportive, loving and safe home environments that promote good values. Instead these children often experience an ugly side of life that can have a devastating effect on their character and development.

Research shows that children naturally and almost unconsciously learn by following examples set by others. And those in homes lacking warmth, caring, love and parental involvement, are likely to imitate the negative behaviour they learn to consider normal.

Regardless of their situation, schools expect all children to be respectful, caring and kind when interacting with teachers and peers. When their behaviour is deemed anti-social or nasty, they may be labeled a bully. read more →

This video by Conscious Discipline appropriately explains bullying as one of the most misunderstood crises of our time. It takes us on an eye opening journey from infancy, highlighting a variety of circumstances within a child’s life that contribute to a bully or victim life-path. Explaining how the bully and victim’s fate can be rerouted through connection, understanding and love, it’s a video all parents and educators should take the time to watch.

A few weeks ago, I went into Chase’s class for tutoring.

I’d emailed Chase’s teacher one evening and said, “Chase keeps telling me that this stuff you’re sending home is math – but I’m not sure I believe him. Help, please.” She emailed right back and said, “No problem! I can tutor Chase after school anytime.” And I said, “No, not him. Me. He gets it. Help me.” And that’s how I ended up standing at a chalkboard in an empty fifth grade classroom staring at rows of shapes that Chase’s teacher kept referring to as “numbers.” read more →

Kindness touches.
A few weeks after I launched Ripple Kindness Project’s Kindness Curriculum, I was approached by a year 5 boy who had been part of the audience at the special assembly held at the school.

This was a boy who was known as a trouble maker in the school, in fact all the children from that family had a reputation of being bullies. This particular day, I was called into the sick bay where he was sitting all alone. I asked him if he was ill and he ignored my question. read more →