Thursday, February 21, 2013

Anti-Bullying Day

Today was anti-bullying day at our school. I'm not sure if it's a national day, but today all our classrooms taught a bullying lesson. Our second grade team decided on this lesson to teach. At first I didn't think my kids were understanding it. I had them draw a picture of themselves. While they were drawing I wanted them to look at their picture and think of all the good things about themselves. What were they proud of. Then we sat on the floor a traded pictures. After trading we talked about how bullies treat people. I had each student say things that bullies tell others to their paper person. They crumppled the paper up. Then I had them apologize to the paper person while uncrinkling it.
Then I had them give the paper person back to the original creator. I asked them if their paper looked the same or different. They all said that it was different. We all went into a discussion on how bullying will affect you and even if someone says they're sorry, we will never forget how it felt. I had them picture a crumppled up heart.
Finally we had parter time. This is when it really hit home. My students were able to talk about bullying and how it has affected them personally. Some of my kids were getting teary eyed and I realized that I should have explicitly taught about bullying earlier on in the year.
It's never too late to talk about bullying and it is something that can be a year long discussion. I'm just glad that I had this lesson and chance to talk about an issue that our students are dealing with everyday. It makes them realize that we understand what they are going through and that we are here to help them.
What do you do in your own classrooms to help stop bullying? Please feel free to leave a comment or link to some activities that you find helpful.

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