Bullying at School | What Parents Can do to Help and Support Their Children

by brandiann
kid bullying

Nothing prepares you for parenthood. Nothing prepares you for hearing about other children being mean to yours. When your child comes home from school and tells you that someone said “I don’t want to play with you” or even worse has pushed, shoved or hurt them in anyway, it is enough to completely shatter your heart into a million pieces.

You are their protector and yet you feel, as though, you failed them. The sad realization comes to fruition as you have to come to terms with the fact that you can’t always be there in person to protect them from harsh words, but you can always be there emotionally. Whether it is a shoulder to cry on or an ear to listen to, it is so important to touch base with your children regularly and ask how things are going in school and with their peers.

It’s imperative that you maintain a rapport with your kids and allow them to feel safe and let themselves feel comfortable opening up to you. Remember that every child is unique, and what works for one may not work for another. Be patient, flexible, and consistent in your efforts to build a strong and open relationship with your kids.


According to the National Center for Educational Statistics (2015), almost one out of every four students (22%) report being bullied during the school year. That number is quite alarming, but sadly is something that has been going on for a long time in history. When other children are being mean to your child, it’s natural to feel protective and want to intervene.

Here are some steps you can take to respond effectively:

zenStay Calm

It’s important to stay calm and composed when addressing the situation. Your child may look to you for guidance on how to handle the situation, and staying calm will help reassure them.

momandsonListen to your Child

Allow your child to express their feelings and share what happened. Listen attentively without interrupting, and validate their emotions. Let them know that it’s okay to feel upset or hurt by what happened.

momhugging-sonTeach Empathy

Help your child understand that the other children’s behavior may stem from their own insecurities or difficulties. Encourage empathy by asking questions like, “Why do you think they said/did that?” or “How do you think they would feel if someone treated them that way?”

girlpowerEmpower your Child

Encourage your child to stand up for themselves in a respectful manner. Teach them assertiveness skills such as calmly stating how they feel, setting boundaries, or using “I” statements to express themselves. Role-play different scenarios with your child to practice these skills.

momcomfortingsonAddress the Behavior

If the situation allows, calmly approach the other children involved and address their behavior. Use a neutral tone and avoid assigning blame. Simply state what you observed and express your expectation for respectful behavior.

momcomfortingchildSeek Support

If the situation escalates or becomes persistent, don’t hesitate to seek support from teachers, school counselors, or other parents. They can provide additional insight and support in addressing the situation effectively.

momcomfortingsonTeach Coping Strategies

Help your child develop coping strategies to deal with mean behavior, such as taking deep breaths, walking away from the situation, or focusing on positive activities that boost their confidence.

positive-vibesPromote Positivity

Encourage your child to focus on positive aspects of themselves and their friendships. Engage them in activities and hobbies that build their self-esteem and foster positive social connections.


Types of Bullying

 

 

Remember, every situation is unique, and it’s important to tailor your response based on your child’s personality and the specific circumstances. By providing support, teaching valuable skills, and promoting empathy, you can help your child navigate through challenging social situations effectively.

It’s crucial to address bullying promptly and effectively to ensure the well-being and safety of your child. By taking proactive steps and working collaboratively with school authorities, you can help your child navigate through this challenging situation.

types of bullying


Addressing Bullying

 

 

Addressing bullying requires a comprehensive approach involving multiple stakeholders, including parents, educators, school administrators, and the community. Here are steps you can take to address bullying effectively:

  • Establish a Safe Environment: Create a school or community environment where bullying is not tolerated. This includes clear anti-bullying policies and procedures that are communicated to all students, staff, and parents.
  • Educate Students and Staff: Provide comprehensive education and training on bullying prevention for students, teachers, and staff. Teach students about empathy, respect, and the importance of standing up against bullying behavior.
  • Encourage Reporting: Create multiple avenues for students to report bullying incidents, such as anonymous reporting systems or trusted adults they can confide in. Ensure that reports are taken seriously and addressed promptly.
  • Investigate Thoroughly: Investigate all reports of bullying thoroughly and impartially. Gather evidence, interview witnesses, and take appropriate disciplinary action against the bully while providing support for the victim.
  • Support Victims: Offer support services and resources for victims of bullying, including counseling, peer support groups, and academic accommodations if needed. Ensure that victims feel safe and supported at school.
  • Empower Bystanders: Teach students how to be active bystanders and intervene safely when they witness bullying behavior. Encourage them to speak up, support the victim, and report incidents to adults.
  • Involve Parents: Keep parents informed about bullying prevention efforts and involve them in developing solutions. Encourage open communication between parents, school staff, and administrators regarding bullying incidents.
  • Implement Consequences: Enforce consequences for bullying behavior that are fair, consistent, and age-appropriate. These consequences should serve as a deterrent while also providing opportunities for the bully to learn and change their behavior.
  • Promote Positive Behavior: Promote a positive school culture that values kindness, inclusivity, and respect. Recognize and celebrate acts of kindness and empathy among students, and reinforce positive behavior through rewards and incentives.
  • Evaluate and Adjust: Regularly evaluate the effectiveness of bullying prevention efforts and adjust strategies as needed. Monitor bullying incidents, gather feedback from students and staff, and make improvements based on data and observations.

By implementing proactive prevention strategies and responding effectively to incidents, schools and communities can create safer and more inclusive environments for all students.

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A poem for a child who has been bullied

poem for child who has been bullied

If you are experiencing bullying or know anyone who is click here for more information.


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