Shifting our thinking to help break the cycle of bullying We all know bullying impacts the academic and emotional lives of our young people. We see it in our schools and hear about it in the news. If we know it’s a problem, why is it still happening? Often it’s because we fail to address the individuals at the heart of the problem–the kids who engage in the behavior. In Working With Kids Who Bully Walter Roberts challenges us to shift our thinking about these youth and offers innovative approaches to help kids pull back from and stop bullying. Readers will find • Information on a range of topics impacting schools today, including cyberbullying, relational aggression, mediation, building empathy, and bibliomedia therapy • Strategies and sample dialogue to use when intervening with kids who bully • Diagrams and charts to clarify suggested approaches Written by one of the nation’s foremost experts on bullying, this is a book designed to stimulate change and ultimately help create safer learning environments for all kids. “Lots of times we focus on helping the victims, but Walter Roberts addresses how to help parents of children who are bullying, as they need tips rather than ‘shaming.” Brigitte Tennis, Headmistress & Eighth Grade Teacher Stella Schola Middle School “The strengths of Working With Kids Who Bully are the vignettes posed, the reflection for analyzing the “bullying” situation, and the suggestions, almost specific guidance, for responding in a timely and “empathetic” manner.” Dana Salles Trevethan, Interim Superintendent Turlock Unified School District
Chapter 2: Understanding Those Who Bully
Understanding Those Who Bully
[Page 9]The reader will notice immediately that I have specifically avoided the use of the term bully to address children and adolescents who engage in those behaviors. That has not always been the case. Why the change?
First, we never should have been using the label in the first place for that very reason—it stereotypes those who engage in any number of behaviors that can be classified as bullying, but as with all labels, it does not do justice to the full attributes of the person or the behavior. Using a behavioral attribute as a simple descriptor tends to encourage us to see only the stereotypical and historical attributes of those who have in the past been called ...