Bullying & Young Children: Understanding the Issues and Tackling the Problem

Bullying & Young Children: Understanding the Issues and Tackling the Problem

Bullying & Young Children: Understanding the Issues and Tackling the Problem

Bullying & Young Children: Understanding the Issues and Tackling the Problem


What is it that makes some children bully and some become victims?

What can you do if despite your best efforts, a child keeps on taunting another?

What steps can you take before communicating with parents and what will you say?

The practice of bullying endures in all schools today. Despite the implementation of bullying policies, parents and staff can be equally perplexed: not really understanding what they have or haven't done to allow it to happen.

Christine Macintyre explores this highly emotive topic, asking why as many as one in 12 school children are bullying victims, and will show in a highly practical way, what can be done to support the children and help staff improve their own practice.

This book will provide help and guidance on:

  • enhancing the self-esteem of the affected children, showing how new-found confidence will enable children to offset the effects of being bullied or indeed being a bully.
  • how to tell parents their child is bullying or being bullied, and how to build up a meaningful and mutually supportive relationship with them.
  • creating a learning environment that prevents the desire for children to bully.

Based on case studies giving first hand accounts of real-life situations, and evaluations of strategies that have been tried and tested, this book suggests fresh and inspiring ways of tackling a problem faced by many practitioners today.


Question 1: How easy it is to talk with parents about bullying?

When staff in nurseries and schools were asked about communicating with parents, some, especially those in the early years settings, immediately claimed that their relationship was such that they could broach any issue, even bullying. ‘This is because parents come into the nursery regularly and we become friends. Sometimes we get to know whole families so we build up trust and know that everyone is doing their best for each child.’ Others were much less confident that topics such as bullying could be discussed openly. ‘It’s different if you are talking about behaviour at a general level,’ explained Rhana, ‘but when it gets personal, involving their child, when you are trying to find the words to say that there is a problem, it’s a different story.’

Jack added another dimension to the discussion. He explained:

When you ask parents to come into school, the balance of power
is skewed. Even if they don’t know what you want to discuss,
they suspect something is wrong and they expect to be blamed for
whatever it is. So, from the start they are on the defensive. It’s an
echo of the bully–victim scenario and it needs more than a cup of
tea to dispel this atmosphere and relax them … and us, because
we feel very apprehensive too.

Mandeep added:

There are times when I would like to say to the parents, ‘you
are bullying me. I am doing my best for your child but you are
making comments in front of other parents, saying that we are not
doing a good job. That is so hurtful and so untrue.’ Some parents
tell me they are paying for their child not to get a scratch so if that

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