The focus of this years Pink Shirt Day is working together and treating others with dignity and respect. The COVID-19 pandemic has affected us all and shown the importance of helping one another and advocating for those who need it. The aim is to “lift each other up” and encourage healthy self esteem, empathy, compassion and kindness.
Make it clear that bullying WON'T be accepted under any circumstances and students who violate this will be faced with serious consequences. Enforcing this also makes students feel more comfortable to speak up if they are exposed to bullying.
Encourage Kids to Speak Up
Most times, bullying continues because students are worried that they will just be picked at when the teacher is not around or if the students have witnessed it, they themselves will become victimized. As a classroom, create a process of dealing with bullying. Illustrate the things students should do if they experience bullying. Read this out to your classroom and be clear that these are the rules your classroom stands by.
Spot The Signs
Bullying is when someone tries to deliberately hurt someone else and inflict pain. This can be physically or emotionally. Some common forms of bullying are, teasing name calling, hitting, kicking, pushing, breaking someone's things, leaving someone out, spreading rumors, texting to threaten, embarrass, or hurt someone's reputation online. Educate yourself and your classroom of the signs, so you all know what to look out for.
Encourage and Support One Another
Ask students to turn to the student next to them and say something nice about them. Then as a classroom openly discuss why it's important to use positive language toward one another.
As a classroom, reflect on a word that makes you feel bad. An example could be if someone were to call you stupid, ask students to observe how that makes them feel, then ask them to consider how this kind of words would be hurtful to others.
Free video resources for teachers and families:
X Power: Conflict Resolution + Bullying Prevention Content
Our X Power video series takes students through the steps of conflict resolution; to remind them that when they are faced with a conflict, they can use their inner P.O.W.E.R. We've also included a calming Tai Chi exercise, as we find it's the best way to Pause & Breathe; our first step of the P.O.W.E.R acronym!
1. What is the difference between bullying and conflict?
2. How do you think someone feels when they are bullied?
3. How would you feel if you were the target of a bully?
4. What can you do if you see bullying in action either in person or online?
5. What are some things your class could do to help decrease bullying at your school?
"Two people can come up with an idea, run with it, and it can do wonders." - Travis Price, Co-Founder of Pink Shirt Day
Don't forget to share with your community!
We know you'll get some great use out of these free resources. If you're not on the X Movement Classroom digital platform, and you'd like more information about how X Movement's offerings would work for your school community, get in touch.