October is National Bully Prevention Month and because of all of the bullying that has been happening in our class this year we have spent quite a bit of time on this topic. After reading about this series on a blog and then discovering them at the library, I thought that maybe this would help us get through to them.
Each book is written from a different point of view about the same situation. Weird! is the girl who is getting bullied. Tough! is the bully. And Dare! is the girl who stands by and doesn’t act. Three of us (my co-teacher, a student, and myself) each took a book. We read a page or two from each book in a rotation, so all three were happening at the same time. I think that these are great books regardless of how you choose to read them, this is just the way we decided to share them.
After finishing all three books, we asked the students to consider which character they most identified with. What kind of person are you? The bully? The bullied? The bystander? Then, discuss with their table groups what they can do to prevent bullying depending what type of person they identify with most. Surprisingly, they were very honest about themselves. The bullies admit to being bullies, the “weird” children were quick to admit who they were and the bystanders knew that they let it happen and can “dare” to stop bullying.
The conversations that filled our room today were honest and respectful. Hopefully we will see a difference in the way students treat each other now that they have heard what it is like from the other sides of bullying.