Changes have been seen in our brains by Neuroscience due to definitive acts of compassion. Schools whose academic programs have incorporated skills of empathy and kindness into the school curriculum have seen reduction in behavior like bullying in the campus. According to pacer.org more than 50% of all students have reported getting bullied at some point of time. Given here are some ways by not a parent can teach their children avoid getting bullied but also how they can stand up against when someone else is getting bullied too.
The best way to avoid be an easy target by a bully is for the kid to be confident regarding all aspects starting from her/his body language to their way of talking. Bullies tend to target kids who seem under-confident and tend have lesser people to socialize, also bullies can manipulate their targets in respect to their small social circle. Also teaching a child to be confident about her/his personality not only help them not to be bullied but also give their personality a boost which will help them in future.
Keeping Eye Contact
Kids who can maintain eye-contact shows self-confidence and self-esteem. Not maintaining eye contact means that the child has lesser confidence and is more likely get easily scared by the bully. Remember that bullies will most likely target children with who lacks confidence and self-esteem, but if told to stop by making eye contact then the bully will most likely leave.
Don’t Let Your Kids Think that They are a Victim
The worst reason possible that a kid will bullied again and again is by feeling like a victim. Well forgiving your bully is a totally personal thing, but in case children holds on to the anger because of bullied then they will most likely grow up resenting everyone around them. Children who grow up with resentment like that thinks that they are victims being pushed around by everyone all the time. Help the child go through the phase of being bullied in a positive manner where they let go of that anger and not hold on to it for their whole life.
Let Them Know that Being Assertive is Good
An assertive person is someone who knows to stand up for their own rights and is also fully capable of defending others too against injustice. Encourage kids to stand up for themselves and let them know that it is fully acceptable if they tell the bully to stop targeting them or someone else. This will not help them have confidence to stand up against a bully but will also help them stand for themselves when they grow up.
Kids with high self-esteem are not only comfortable with how they are but are less likely to get bullied too. They also cope from being bullied very easily as they cannot easily manipulated by the bully. Bullies like children who have lower self-esteem because of which they will be annoyed and easily affected.
Encourage Kids to Make Friends
Bullies are more likely to target children with few or no friends as those children don’t have anyone to get support from. Having friends will not only reduce the chances of kids from getting bullied but will also help them cope better in case they are bullied. Friends are great support in school and in life, having friends to get support from when feeling down will not only boost the confidence but also will lead kids to making lifelong allies and support system.
Beware of Places Where Bullying can Occur Easily
There are very particular places in school such as the locker room, school bus, bathrooms where bullies are more likely to target people. Kids should try to be accompanied by their friends in these places. Also during breaks kids should be in an open crowded place where adults are likely to be present. Bullies tend to target others when they are not under adult supervision.
Bullying is the Fault of the Bully and Not of the One Getting Bullied
A lot of children tend to think that if they have been targeted by the bully in more than one occasion then it is somehow their own fault. Children need to be taught that bullying is a choice made by the bully and there is nothing wrong with their own selves. Children needs to understand that a bullies behavior has nothing to do with how they themselves behave.
How Kids Can Stop Others from Getting Bullied
Small Sentences play a Big Role
Prevention programs against bullying which are based in school teaches kids to be kind and empathetic to a bullied student of bullying. More than fifty percent of the time the act of bullying ends in just mere ten seconds when other kids stands up in support of the bullied child. Sadly, only a very few programs demonstrate how one should stand up against bullying.
A method which children uses quite often to stand up against bullies are bully bans, referring to small sentences which are very much to-the-point helping in preventing the act of bullying without escalating it further. Bully bans are formed to help kids during the heated moments when the brain tend to think of words which may end up escalating the argument rather than stop it. It is supposed to be taught to the kids during the prevention program so that they can memorize and use the phrase easily in the time of need.
Bully bans needs to be short and made by the child themselves so that it can come naturally to them. Also adults should role-play with them so that their language of bully ban sounds confident enough.
Changing the Subject of Discussion
More than often young children can get intimidated while going through bullying and may fail to say the learned wordings. This is truer in situations where a child may have stood up for the bullied student but have found themselves to be the one getting bullied in that situation. In this kind of a situation, kids should be taught to know how to change the subject by maybe asking for the date of the science test or by asking for the score of a soccer match.
Break the Crowd of Students
While the act of bullying is going on it happens more than often that a crowd gathers around to see the act of bullying. If the kid who is facing the cruelty of the bully manages to break this crowd formation then they can easily manage to prevent the bully as the bully derive their social power from the on looking crowd.
Usage of Humor
Kids should definitely be taught to lighten up a stressful situation like bullying with the help of humor. This can be done by making the student body around laugh by bringing up a meme or a funny video or maybe even by cracking a joke. They can also reflect upon the behaviour of the bully and turn the tables completely. Kids who are caring and empathetic can easily take off the pressure from another kid who is a bullied student of bullying by using humor.
Standing with the Person who is Getting Bullied
In the situations where bully ban, humor and distractions fail to work, then the kid should be encouraged to stand beside the other kid getting bullied. This not only gives support to the child getting bullied but also shows the bully that the bullied student is not unaided as sometimes bullies tend to go after kids who are alone and thus more vulnerable.
Show Support Even after Bullying is over
On-spot intervenes during bullying have proven to be very effective but at the same time support should be shown to the bullied student even after bullying is over. Sometimes the child who was a bullied student of bullying can be going through a plethora of emotions and thus should be given support. Acts which will show support to the bullied student even after the bullying is over are by asking to sit with during lunch or in the bus or by sending them friendly messages.
A really nice way to be compassionate towards a child who has faced bullying can be done by letting them know how sorry the other child feels about what happened to the child who was the bullied student. The child should be told how amazing s/he is and that they don’t deserve to be bullied by anyone. These acts of kindness and friendship not only makes the bullied student feel supported but also prevents them from feeling lonely and depressed about their situation, it gives them strength.
Getting Help from Adults
Bullied students of bullying tend to get secluded and lonesome. During the years of upper elementary and middle school, most kids tend to believe that if they try to reach out to an adult for help then they might be shamed for it by being called names or something worse. Bullies like to make their bullied students feel lonely so that it also makes them powerless. Children who see their friends or schoolmates getting bullied should be taught to let an adult such as a teacher or a parent know about it. In case of adults, kids should be taught to go to someone they can trust easily who will also help out the bullied student rather than causing inconvenience to the bullied student.
Also kids can carry an emergency whistle which can help them in case of a threat from a bully or someone else
Preparing kids for what may come is the best thing a parent can do as they won’t be around their kids all the time. Kids need to know to know not only how avoid bullies when they are at school but also how to deal with them in case they are the ones getting bullied. This beforehand preparation will not only help children to be prepared for the unknown but will also give them confidence to deal with situation.