The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services describes bullying as purposely hurting or scaring another person. Examples that might occur at the primary level include teasing, excluding certain kids from activities, making up rumours or physically hurting another child. Teaching children about bullying at a young age helps reduce more severe forms of bullying as the kids get older.
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Puppets offer a child-friendly way to process different bullying situations. Create a list of several situations that involve bullying relevant to the primary age. Examples include two children teasing another child, a child getting pushed on the playground and one child being left out of a game. Use situations from the classroom if you've had bullying issues with the students. Act out the situation using the puppets. Ask for suggestions from the students on how to handle that situation. Get the students involved in performing the puppet show for a more active role.
Getting the entire classroom or school community involved in the anti-bullying movement makes it more effective. Beaded bracelets allow students to show that they don't accept bully behaviours in their school. Provide kids with a variety of colourful beads and letter beads. The students string the beads onto elastic string. Encourage them to spell out anti-bullying messages such as "No bullying allowed" or "Include everyone" with the letter beads. Brainstorm a list and write them on the board for reference. The kids wear their anti-bullying bracelets to send a message to others and to remind themselves of their commitment to no bullying.
Sidewalk Chalk Messages
Take the anti-bullying messages to the sidewalks with this creative activity. Sidewalk chalk is an appealing form of creating artwork to younger children. Bring the students onto the playground or the school sidewalks, and encourage them to draw pictures and write anti-bullying messages. This expands the anti-bullying message to the entire school.
Awards encourage primary students to make positive choices when it comes to a situation that involves bullying. The students or teachers nominate other students who handled a situation without bullying. The awards might also go to a student who stood up for another child who was being bullied. Create a certificate for the student who is nominated and share the reason with the entire class.
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