Recently I presented at a conference in San Antonio, Texas, to a group of awesome middles school teachers and administrators. We each shared some tips and suggestions that can help defuse a bullying situation.
We talked about many techniques that can help victims of a bully and some things that don’t work. We all agreed that eye contact is one of the best ways to stand up to a bully and how it allows the victims to express confidence and self-esteem.
Another suggestion was to select three students from the class room to act out a bullying situation, allowing students to see how it looks and feels to be a victim of a bully or group of bullies. The social studies teacher explained how she has two students pretend to be the gossip girls and the third student stands center stage listening to all the bad things they are saying about her. Then she opens it up to the rest of the class to discuss their reaction to what they just witnessed. She said that nine times out of ten, the students either share how wrong they think it is to talk about another or offer of tips to the victim.
Another suggestion was to bring the alleged bully and victim together to talk it out in front of a small panel of students and social worker or teacher working as mediators to help find a common ground and put and end to the bullying.
Each of these suggestions has been implemented and has helped bring an end to bullying problems in their schools. If you have suggestions that have worked at your school please respond to this blog.