Archive for the ‘Bullying’ Category

Nobody’s a Nobody: An Original Poem

January 20, 2020

nobody

 

NOBODY’S A NOBODY by Michael Grossman

I used to be so popular,

When I was back at school.

The teacher’s used to love me.

The kids thought I was cool.

 

I used to be so pretty,

And very good at sport.

Used to think I was quite special,

Or at least that’s what I thought.

 

I used to hang with cool girls

Who knew the latest trends.

Everyone looked up to us,

And wanted to be friends.

 

So many kids we just ignored

I regret it in a way,

They may have seemed like nerds back then,

But look at them today.

 

I remember this one girl,

Big Stella Green

With these ugly, awkward glasses

And a huge nose in between.

 

We used to tease and tease her,

Before and after school.

Once old Tommy McNoughton

Shoved her in the abandoned pool.

 

If only he would have known

That later, in a time of strife,

Stella Green would operate on his fiance,

And all but save her life.

 

What about Kayoko Kishimoto?

Our only Japanese student.

She was brilliant at science,

But at English – not so fluent.

 

We would never come and talk to her.

No one would even try.

They just left her all alone,

Supposing she was shy.

 

Did she end up learning English?

Well, what can you say

About the winner of an Oscar,

For Best Original Screenplay.

 

There was Dante Ferretti,

Who was the ‘school geek’,

With his great boofy hair,

And pimples for each cheek.

 

So tired of getting abused

And so embarrassed with his looks,

He used to hide his spotty face,

Inside a range of different books.

 

Who would have thought

That this reserved, avid reader,

Would go on to become

Our new State Opposition Leader?

 

Everyone used to fear

Max Stockwell “The Freak”.

Rumour had it he ate live snails,

And showered once a week.

 

The girls thought he was mad,

The boys thought he was weird.

He’d come walking through a corridor,

And the corridor all but cleared.

 

I hear he’s no longer weird,

And no longer is he ‘mad’;

Instead, he’s changing nappies

As a loving, stay-home dad.

 

I was never better than them.

I used to be so lame.

If I only understood,

That we are all the same.

 

I used to be “cool”,

But never was I happy,

Until the day I realised

NOBODY’S A NOBODY.

 

 

Special Announcement:

I am donating 100% of the royalties of my hilarious new children’s book, My Favourite Comedian, during the month of January to those affected by the devastating bushfires in my country, Australia. This book is perfect for children aged 9 to 14 and the ideal class novel for Upper Primary students. Please leave a comment to indicate your purchase. You can buy a copy by clicking on this link.

 

The Great Influencer in the Anti-Bullying Space

January 12, 2020

 

The anti-bullying maestro does it again!

Mike Feuerstein, the award-winning filmmaker who travels from school to school armed with his extensive knowledge about empowering children and using the craft of film for the greater good, has struck gold again.

Mike works with classes of non-professional Primary school-aged actors on film scripts that he bases loosely on the real-life experiences of the very children he works with. This makes the final product not only thoroughly entertaining but insightful, relevant and a real game-changer in getting children to reflect on poor habits and the likely consequences of their actions.

In his latest trilogy, Mediasphere, Feuerstein’s focus is social media addiction and the tendency for the fake world of likes and influencer rankings to take over. In the first instalment, cleverly titled Pop Polarity (the other two segments will be reviewed over the next few weeks), a new girl in a school that values social media presence over the real person and the qualities that make them unique is made to decide whether she wants to play by the rules or maintain her sense of self and dignity. This oddball school, where even the Principal is far less interested in academic progress than Twitter followers, cleverly plays on society’s false priorities and allows children to observe how absurd online behaviour can be.

I have had the good fortune to collaborate with and befriend Mike over the last decade and remain a huge admirer of his work. Over the course of my career, I have encountered my fair share of anti-bullying and cyber safety programs. None has come close to Mike’s How to UnMake a Bully series for effectiveness, artistry and student engagement.

Below is the movie. I urge you to show this and all his other movies to your class.

 

 

Special Announcement:

I am donating 100% of the royalties of my hilarious new children’s book, My Favourite Comedian, during the month of January to those affected by the devastating bushfires in my country, Australia. This book is perfect for children aged 9 to 14 and the ideal class novel for Upper Primary students. Please leave a comment to indicate your purchase. You can buy a copy by clicking on this link.

The App That Successfully Tackles Schoolyard Bullying

January 8, 2018

Good on you Natalie Hampton on your initiative. It takes some courage to take a painful situation and use it to improve the world.

How fabulous is this app!

 

“I was ostracized by everyone. I ate lunch alone every day. I was pushed into lockers. I was sent threatening emails,” said high school senior Natalie Hampton of California. “I was physically attacked three times in two weeks and I came home sobbing with bleeding red scratch marks.”

She eventually switched schools, but the memories of those years of torment stuck with her.

“So many people walked back and forth in front of my table and all I wanted to hear was ‘hey are you OK? Come sit with us,'” Natalie said.

Those four words, “come sit with us,” sparked an idea and eventually an app.

“If you go to the search tab, it gives you a whole list of the lunches that you can join in your school without any fear of rejection,” Natalie said.

She created the “Sit With Us” app — free to download, private to use. It connects kids in need of company with welcoming students.

The app now has over 100,000 users in eight different countries, giving Natalie a megaphone for her message.

She’s become an outspoken leader of the anti-bullying movement. She speaks at conferences and even gave a TED Talk.

The app, and its message to be inclusive, is inspiring other students like eighth grader Lola Clark. She created a “Sit With Us” club at her school since they don’t allow cellphones.

 

 

Click on the link to read There’s More Effective Methods than Simply Punishing Bullies

Click on the link to read The Best Thing We can Teach Our Students is to Love

Click on the link to read Bullying Victim Teaches His Attackers a Lesson!

Click on the link to read Horrific Bullying Attack Caught on Video

There’s More Effective Methods than Simply Punishing Bullies

February 12, 2017

bully-sandwhich-board

Here is one method that is more effective in counteracting bullying than punishments:

 

SCHOOLYARD bullies are more often stopped by meetings with their victims than by being punished, new research has revealed.

A study of 25 Australian schools found the best way to curb bullying was through ­restorative practice — asking a bully to reflect on the damage they have done and “act ­restoratively”.

Mediation and improving the social skills and assertiveness of victims also helped, schools said. But direct sanctions, such as verbal reprimands and detentions, were labelled least effective.

Researcher adjunct professor Ken Rigby, from the University of South Australia, said schools weren’t going soft on bullying by tackling the issue with mediation and meetings.

“You can’t stop all cases of bullying,” Prof Rigby said. “But teachers are increasingly seeing that direct sanctions don’t work particularly well.”

The study, published in the Australian Journal of Education, found some schools used direct sanctions in cases of extreme bullying or when restorative practice had failed.

Elwood Primary School uses mediation and meetings with students to stop bullying, but doesn’t punish kids with ­detention.

Click on the link to read The Best Thing We can Teach Our Students is to Love

Click on the link to read Bullying Victim Teaches His Attackers a Lesson!

Click on the link to read Horrific Bullying Attack Caught on Video

Click on the link to read Are Kids Really More Aggressive Nowadays?

The Best Thing We can Teach Our Students is to Love

July 26, 2015

 

The title of this piece is a quote from comedian and anti-bullying campaigner, Michael Pritchard. And he is spot on!

Even more important than literature and science is the skill of love. How to love ones self and how to love others.

Please share this video with your colleagues and students.

 

Click on the link to read Bullying Victim Teaches His Attackers a Lesson!

Click on the link to read Horrific Bullying Attack Caught on Video

Click on the link to read Are Kids Really More Aggressive Nowadays?

Click on the link to read I Thought Sport Was Supposed to Bring People Together (Video)

 

Bullying Victim Teaches His Attackers a Lesson!

July 7, 2015
gavin Joseph could have insisted his attackers felt the full force of the law - instead he chose something far more effective  Source: Facebook

gavin Joseph could have insisted his attackers felt the full force of the law – instead he chose something far more effective Source: Facebook

A teenager gets beaten by his bullies and has the opportunity to have his attackers charged.

But no, he thought of something even better!

 

Gavin was tricked into meeting the group, who then surrounded him. He was ‘choked, punched, and left laying on the pavement so he would “learn his lesson”‘, explained mum Cortnie Stone on Facebook, in a post from family friend Susan Moffat that’s now been shared almost 130,000 times.

Gavin was left with mild concussion, a bruised esophagus, a fracture to the tip of his nose, and hematoma in his eye.

However, when his attackers were identified, rather than press charges, he choose to teach the bullies a lesson of his own, a lesson about what it’s like to walk in another person’s shoes.

Cortnie explains: ‘He did not press charges, but requested their community service be disability related, that they write a paper on Asperger’s, and that they watch a 20 min video statement he taped while their families were present so they could see the damage they did and hear the event from his perspective.’

She adds: ‘I am so proud of him, and I hope a lesson will come of this to all that hear about it.’

 

gavin-revenge

 

Click on the link to read Horrific Bullying Attack Caught on Video

Click on the link to read Are Kids Really More Aggressive Nowadays?

Click on the link to read I Thought Sport Was Supposed to Bring People Together (Video)

Click on the link to read The Rampant New Trend of Bullying Red Headed Boys

Horrific Bullying Attack Caught on Video

June 30, 2015

 

 

 

The girl being beaten up is only 13 and is now too terrified to go to school

 

Click on the link to read Are Kids Really More Aggressive Nowadays?

Click on the link to read I Thought Sport Was Supposed to Bring People Together (Video)

Click on the link to read The Rampant New Trend of Bullying Red Headed Boys

Click on the link to read 8 Methods to Stop Your Child From Being a Bully

Are Kids Really More Aggressive Nowadays?

March 29, 2015

 

aggression

Is it just me that hasn’t noticed an increase in aggression in the playground? If anything, I just think we are more aware of it and better understand the implications of playground conflict:

 

Tag…a simple game of tag. Seems innocent enough. But is it? Not according to many teachers.

Kids are starting to hit with such force that they often end up whacking their opponent across the back in a monstrous slap. I’ve seen this myself many times. “Ouch!” one kid cries, now on their hands and knees and fighting off tears. “Don’t hit so hard!” they yell up at the child standing over them. Often, you hear the other child whine, “I didn’t mean too…” Many times the act seems unintentional, although painful for the victim nonetheless. Tag is now becoming such an issue that schools are starting to ban this once beloved game.

In the fall of 2013, the problem of banning the childhood game hit a little too close to home. At a local New Hampshire school, tag was no longer a reality for many children. A classic game that was cherished through the ages was dismissed due to safety concerns. Parents and children were confused and some were outraged. Headlines stated everything from, “Banning Tag is Dumb” to “More Schools Banning Tag because of Injuries.” Curious, I started interviewing teachers in Maine and New Hampshire about what they were seeing at recess time.

One teacher said, “Kids are becoming more aggressive. When they play games like tag, they push with great force, often hurting the other child. We had to implement a ‘two-finger’ touch rule, so that kids couldn’t push so hard.” Another teacher that had been around for 30 years, saidshe had seen an increase in aggressive behavior as well. “They can’t seem to keep their hands off each other! Kids are always getting hurt.” A local principal stated that tag had become such a problem that they had to get creative. They gave the children foam noodles to “tag” the other children with and avoid actual contact with the hands.

The problem? Due to less time in active play these days, children are not developing the senses in their joints and muscles (proprioceptive sense) like they used to. In the past, it was more common for children to help with the outdoor chores. They would assist with raking leaves, shoveling the snow, and would even earn money by mowing lawns in their neighborhood. They’d also play for hours outside – moving heavy rocks to build a dam, scaling trees to new heights, and digging moats in the dirt. All of this “heavy work” helped children to develop a strong and healthy proprioceptive system.

Pediatric occupational therapists often prescribe “heavy work” to young children who have trouble with their proprioceptive sense. This usually consists of anything that gives weighted input to the joints and muscles, such as pulling a wagon that is loaded with bricks, carrying grocery bags, and digging in the garden. These are things that children would be naturally getting if they spent a considerable amount of time outside.

Due to the busy schedules of today, children often don’t have hours to explore the outdoors, to help with the outside chores, or even do small jobs that require manual labor. Therefore, many children don’t have the same opportunities to fully develop and fine-tune the senses in the joints and muscles. As a result, more and more children are starting to have trouble regulating how much force to use when pushing and pulling and even interacting with the objects and people around them.

This is why we are seeing children hit with too much force during a game of tag. Their senses are not quite working right – all because they are not engaged in an adequate amount of active play and movement on a regular basis.

 

Click on the link to read I Thought Sport Was Supposed to Bring People Together (Video)

Click on the link to read The Rampant New Trend of Bullying Red Headed Boys

Click on the link to read 8 Methods to Stop Your Child From Being a Bully

Click on the link to read High School Bullying Victim Gets Even! (Video)

I Thought Sport Was Supposed to Bring People Together (Video)

February 9, 2015

What happened to the fundamental principle of sportsmanship and healthy competition?

The teams involved were Santa Monica High and Beverly Hills High. The fight broke out at Santa Monica High on Jan. 23 following a sweep of the JV and varsity boys’ and girls’ basketball teams by Beverly Hills.

Officials with both schools are now taking steps to diffuse the long-standing rivalry.

On the video, CBS2’s Greg Mills reports “there are lots of punches thrown, angry words.”

“It was clear that the first punches that were thrown were thrown by Samohi students,” said Jackson Price, a Beverly Hills High student, “and the Samohi students out numbered the Beverly High students.”

“If I do not believe that we can participate at Beverly safely, I will cancel all games,” Santa Monica Principal Eva Mayoral wrote to parents.

As is the usual custom, most of the cars parked were at 4th Street, at the Santa Monica Civic Center.  As students walked to their cars, angry words were exchanged.

“I heard there was a big fight, things just got out of hand,” says Santa Monica High student Ronnie Cornelius. He wrestles for the school —  didn’t attend the game — but told Mills “everyone” was talking about it.

Click on the link to read The Rampant New Trend of Bullying Red Headed Boys

Click on the link to read 8 Methods to Stop Your Child From Being a Bully

Click on the link to read High School Bullying Victim Gets Even! (Video)

Click on the link to read Police Charges for Teen Bullies is More than Appropriate

The Rampant New Trend of Bullying Red Headed Boys

January 21, 2015

red head

 

Bullying in all shapes and forms is inexcusable but I particularly hate to see people being tormented for the colour of their skin, the country their country of origin or the in vogue tradition of victimising boys with red hair:

 

Without warning, a boy in uniform is pushed.

But it’s soon clear, this is no schoolyard tiff.

After being grabbed and pummelled, the victim is thrown to ground and swiftly kicked in the head.

Four left fists follow before a second kick, and a third to finish him off.

The young thug then adjusts his cap as he coolly walks away.

The unprovoked attack at Ringwood Station was carried out last October by a 15-year-old boy, who can’t be named for legal reasons.

He pleaded guilty in a children’s court and was sentenced to 12 months probation.

The violent teen is the son of a prominent AFL player – but instead of using his skills on the sporting field, the boy is getting his kicks by preying on others.

While the boy hasn’t been named, 7News understands teenagers know who he is and several have also been harassed or assaulted by him but have been too frightened to come forward.

Psychologist Dr Simon Kinsella says such aggression in young males is all too common.

“Very often they’re trying to maintain their reputation amongst their peers as being a tough person, a tough guy, and they don’t give any real consideration to what impact it might have on the victim,” he told 7News.

The victim’s parents hope their son’s courage will encourage others to go to police.

They are considering legal action against the attacker’s family.

 

CCTV footage of the incident is available here

 

 

Click on the link to read 8 Methods to Stop Your Child From Being a Bully

Click on the link to read High School Bullying Victim Gets Even! (Video)

Click on the link to read Police Charges for Teen Bullies is More than Appropriate

Click on the link to read African Children Bullied at School Because of Ebola


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