Parents, school staff, and other caring adults have a role to play in preventing bullying. We can help kids understand bullying.
- Talk about what bullying is and how to stand up to it safely. Tell kids bullying is unacceptable. Make sure kids know how to get help
- Keep the lines of communication open. Check in with kids often. Listen to them. Know their friends, ask about school, and understand their concerns
- Encourage kids to do what they love. Special activities, interests, and hobbies can boost confidence, help kids make friends, and protect them from bullying behavior
Stop Bullying if it Happens
- Encourage kids to speak to a trusted adult if they are bullied or see others being bullied. The adult can give comfort, support, and advice, even if they can’t solve the problem directly.
- Encourage children to report bullying if it happens
- Talk about how to stand up to kids who bully. Give tips, like using humor and saying “stop” directly and confidently. Talk about what to do if those actions don’t work, like walking away.
- Talk about strategies for staying safe, such as staying near adults or groups of other kids
- Urge children to help kids who are bullied by showing kindness or getting help
Keep the Lines of Communication Open
Research tells us that children really do look to parents and caregivers for advice and help on tough decisions. Sometimes spending 15 minutes a day talking with your child ( or grandchild) and their friends can reassure them that they can talk to you if they have a problem. Start conversations about daily life and feelings with questions like these:
- What was one good thing that happened today?
- Any bad things happen?
- What is lunch time like at your school?
- Who do you sit with?
- What do you talk about?
- What is it like to ride the school bus?
There are simple ways that parents and caregivers can keep up-to-date with kids’ lives.
- Read class newsletters and school flyers. Talk about them at home.
- Check the school website and go to school events
- Meet teachers Back to School night or reach out by email
Kids learn from adults’ actions. By treating others with kindness and respect, adults show the kids in their lives that there is no place for bullying.
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