The Final 8 Great Ideas to Bully-Proof Your School
By now you should’ve already received the first 20 Great Bully Prevention Ideas. If you didn’t, here’s the link: Ten More Great Ideas to Bully-Proof Your School. Here are the final 8 in a series of 28 great action ideas that you can implement at your school.
IMPORTANT: Do not attempt to implement all of these “action-items” at once. Read through this entire article and pick and choose the one’s that are right for your school. ONE AT A TIME!
Oh, also important – Clear it with your principal before starting any of these actions.
Remember, Bully Prevention is a year-round venture. There is no single solution. The more you do throughout the year, the better the results. Here we go…
Great idea #21
Catching Your Students with “Good Character” – Many schools already do this with great success. Here’s how it works: Whenever you, your teachers or staff see a student doing something that show’s good character, reward them. Students really look forward to being recognized and it gives them incentive to “Be Good”.
There are few ways to do it:
- Print up little “Good Character” slips of paper, give them out when appropriate, then have the students purchase prizes from the “Character Cart” (of course, you’ll have to create a character cart with prizes). Larger prizes cost more slips.
- Have the teachers make notes of the students that were caught with good character, report them to the principal and have the principal announce every morning who and why they were caught with good character. (Doesn’t cost a penny, but students get to hear their name and feel great!)
- Give out “Good Character” slips throughout the week, put them all in a bin, then choose one randomly at the end each week for a prize. (I’m not a huge fan of this one because only one child gets recognized each week)
- “Good Character Contest” – The student at the end of each week with the most Character slips gets a big prize. All others get a small prize. All are recognized.
The most important thing to remember is to recognize each child for “Being Good”.
Great idea #22
Bully Prevention Flash-Mob – Here’s one that’s super fun and the students LOVE IT!!
Choreograph a very simple dance to a bully free type song. You can write your own song. Or, if you’d rather, use an old standard.
Here are a few ideas:
Wooly Bully by Sam the Sham and the Pharaohs
Just the Way You Are by Bruno Mars
Stand By Me by Ben E King
Theme to Rocky by Bill Conti
I Believe I Can Fly by R. Kelly
Set aside a little time each week to teach and review a little of it. Once it’s done, it’s done.
Now, every time you play the song, kids jump up and do the Flash Mob dance. Super fun and shocking to anybody just standing around. Once it’s done, you can review it each year and have it forever. It’ll be the Official School Bully Free Flash Mob Dance.
Students can even do it when they’re on a field trip. As long as there’s room and nobody gets hurt (and you don’t get kicked out of wherever you are), you’re good to go.
Great idea #23
Parenting Seminars on Bullying – Ok. Maybe this is not for the students directly. But all students, staff and parents can benefit from a good parenting seminar. Since bullying really starts at home, getting the parents involved can help. There are many to choose from. Let’s start with the FREE ones. They may or may not be the best Parenting Seminars, but the price certainly is right. And they’ll condition your parents to coming to the school on a regular basis.
FREE PARENTING SEMINARS
- Contact your local police station. They usually have outreach police officers designated to talk to schools about bullying. Some even have officers that can talk to parents about Cyberbullying. Call and ask what they offer. Almost always free.
- Contact local hospitals near you. Most hospitals have health and safety awareness programs. Some offer free videos and actually have people that are assigned to come out to schools to talk about these issues. Almost always free.
- Contact your local Karate/Jiujitsu studio. Some have Bully Prevention seminars for both parents and students. They do it to promote their studio, so they are generally free.
PAID PARENTING SEMINARS
These are generally more comprehensive because, of course, you get what you pay for. And generally paid speakers do not have an agenda of their own (other than bully prevention) and are not promoting a studio or their local hospital. The speaker can come to you live or on video.
You want to make sure that the students and the parents are speaking the same language. So, take notes or use the speaker’s follow-up material to present the information to the students in an easy to digest manner. You can do that at one of your morning assemblies.
Here’s what most Parenting Seminar Speakers WON’T TELL YOU:
The most difficult part of putting together any parenting seminar is getting people there. That’s the truth. For some reason, some parents will complain until they’re blue in the face that the staff and/or PTA/PTO of the school is doing nothing about bullying. And then, when you have a parenting seminar, they can’t seem to get off their couch. Ok. Knowing that, there are lots of great ways to encourage them to come.
Great idea #24
Bully Prevention (On-Line) Computer Games – Kids LOVE playing computer and video games. Why not make them educational? There are some great games on-line out there that teach bully prevention and bully awareness.
Do some On-Line research. Anti-Bullying gaming changes almost daily. Choose the ones you personally like. Share them with your principal and students.
Make sure to play these yourself BEFORE recommending them to your students. Although I love them, there may be content that could be construed as “against school policy”.
Great idea #25
This one is quick and easy…MAKE MORE MONEY! – If you are having any type of fundraiser, add the Bully Awareness moniker. Just by saying the words “Bully Awareness”, it’ll increase donations for your fundraisers.
Here are some examples:
- Walk-A-Thon for Bully Awareness
- Fall Festival for Bully Awareness
- Cookie Dough Sales for Bully Awareness
It seems simple, and it is. But try it. It’ll increase your donations and constantly put the idea of Bully Awareness in front of your students, staff and parents.
Great idea #26
Take a quiz! – One of the big past-times on Facebook and other social media sites is doing Quizzes. “What 60 Rock Star are you?” “What Kind of Pet Are You?” etc….
Well, here’s a great way to learn more about bullying and bully prevention and, I must admit, it’s kinda fun. Take the “Bullying Quizzes”.
How informed are you? Each question has the answer explained fully and is very informative. I loved them.
Take the quizzes. I think you’ll have fun and learn something on the way. I sure did.
Great idea #27
You or your child/student can ask ANY QUESTION that you may have about a bullying incident. And get an answer! – I was surfing the internet and stumbled upon this great interactive resource. I thought I’d share it with you. PLEASE SHARE IT WITH YOUR STUDENTS!
It’s called Ask Carmen. It’s a place where your child/student can ask specific questions to a bully prevention expert. It’s sponsored by Pacer Center’s Kids Against Bullying and it’s really cool. Your child can post a question about a specific incident and Carmen will answer. You can also read all sorts of other Q & As from other students.
This is an excellent resource. Don’t pass it by. Share it with your child and students.
Great idea #28
Five Ideas to Protect Your Child from Cyberbullying – Bullying doesn’t always happen in person. Cyberbullying is a type of bullying that happens online or through text messages, email, Instagram etc. There are things you can do to protect yourself and your child.
These bully prevention tips originated from stopbullying.gov. It’s a great resource for everything bullying. These are the things I’ve always told my kids…
- Always think about what you post. You never know what someone will forward. Being kind to others online will help to keep you safe. Do not share anything that could hurt or embarrass anyone.
- Keep your password a secret from other kids. Even kids that seem like friends could give your password away or use it in ways you don’t want. Let your parents have your passwords.
- Think about who sees what you post online. Complete strangers? Friends? Friends of friends? Privacy settings let you control who sees what.
- Keep your parents in the loop. Tell them what you’re doing online and who you’re doing it with. Let them friend or follow you. Listen to what they have to say about what is and isn’t okay to do. They care about you and want you to be safe.
- Talk to an adult you trust about any messages you get or things you see online that make you sad or scared. If it is cyberbullying, report it.
Those were the final 8 Bully Prevention Ideas to help you bully-proof your school. Once again, please don’t be overwhelmed. Do not attempt to implement all of these “action-items” at once. Hopefully you have or will put many into use at your school and make a huge difference.
THANK YOU for being a giant part of the bully prevention movement at your school. The students at your school and your own children will be better off BECAUSE OF YOU!