October Is National Bullying Prevention Month

Curriculum Review, September 2017 | Go to article overview

October Is National Bullying Prevention Month


While bullying has never gotten so much media attention as in recent years, the sad fact is it continues to occur in and out of schools across the country.

In fact, about 70 percent of school staff say they have witnessed bullying--with 62 percent witnessing bullying two or more times in the last month, according to federal statistics from StopBullying.gov.

What's more, about 28 percent of students in grades 6-12 have experienced bullying and about 20 percent in grades 9-12 have. Roughly 9 percent of students in grades 6-12 have experienced cyberbullying, government statistics noted.

October marks National Bullyingn Prevention Month, so at Curriculum Review we thought we'd provide a few uplifting ways to help your students stop bullying.

Encouraging Kindness

One way to help combat bullying and to celebrate the month is to teach kindness, according to Susan Swearer, co-director of the Bullying Research Network.

"Unfortunately, many schools respond to negative behaviors such as bullying with punishment, which is thought to reduce or eliminate such behaviors. After years of research on 'zero-tolerance' to end bullying and violence, we know that these punishment-based approaches do not work. Given this knowledge, it makes better sense to focus on teaching and modeling pro-social behavior, like teaching kindness," Swearer said in a blog post on StopBullying.gov.

Main Components in Teaching Kindness

Swearer noted that kindness programs can vary but there are some key elements that most programs share, which include:

* Gratitude activities

* Volunteer activities or service learning

* Students developing activities to help others

* Encouraging respectful conversations

* Generating open-ended discussion questions

* Supporting the idea of working together

* Teaching and model-naming and expressing emotions.

Ways to Teach Kindness

Mindfulness involves becoming aware of a specific thought, emotion or behavior. …

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