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 8: Making the Communication and Relational Connection
Making the Communication and Relational Connection
[Page 91]First and foremost in working with those who bully is making some kind of communication and relational connection with them. While not always easy to do, Interveners find that it is often a lot less difficult than they had originally imagined, especially when they drop their own defenses and beliefs about the individual going into the initial session. We must always remember to leave our own “baggage” outside the room where we hope to help others. Extra baggage just weighs us down and keeps us from seeing and hearing all we need to when engaged with other people.
The First Contact
The following scenario presumes an interaction with an agent of bullying who has, ...