Wednesday, March 18, 2015
Don't Let This Be a Problem For Your Child
I've recently had an issue at school. Let me tell you about it.
In our elementary school the second-fifth graders read books and take tests online over their comprehension. When they pass the test they earn points and get prizes. Sounds great, right? Well you are always going to find some that try to buck the system. There was this sweet girl who I'll call Ann. Well Ann is quiet, sweet, and adores reading. Ann has never gotten in trouble and every year she receives an award for her great behavior. Ann's mom comes several times a week to eat lunch with her and her parents are just as sweet as she is. Ann is the student all teachers love to have. Ann had 3 of her "friends" ask, plead, demand (basically bully) her to take these tests for them. Ann knew it was wrong but she didn't know how to handle the situation. Eventually she was so guilty for cheating that she confessed to her mom. Mom contacts the school and we are made aware of the situation.
The 3 "friends" were talked to about how they aren't being real friends and how what they were doing was wrong. When Ann was confronted she immediately started crying. I spoke to her about how her whole life people are trying to get her to do things she doesn't want to do. You are probably thinking yeah like doing drugs, but if you think about it we as adults are confronted with being pressured into things all the time that we don't want to do. How many of you have hosted a "sell something" party when you didn't want to? How many have bought cookie dough from your friend's kids even though you have 12 boxes in your freezer? Bullying is a part of life.
Although we need to continue teaching anti-bullying curriculum we also need to teach coping skills. Don't send your kids into the world without skills on how to deal with a bully. Of course, each situation is different but there are some general ways to help.
1. Talk about it even when it isn't happening. Don't forget to talk about not bullying and what to do if you are being bullied.
2. Give your child scenarios and ask them what they would do.
3. Give praise if they tell you about an incident at school. It is very brave when someone talks about bullying. They may even tell you about how they witness bullying.
Yesterday I saw a student being bullied and you know what happened....the other kids did one of two things. They either joined in and kept their mouth closed. Do you want your child to be one of those? I know I don't.
Posted by Ashley Ponder at 18.3.15