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Bullying Prevention, Response, and Support. Mary Combi. What is Bullying?.

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what is bullying
What is Bullying?
  • Bullying is unwanted, aggressive behavior among school aged children that involves a real or perceived power imbalance. The behavior is repeated, or has the potential to be repeated, over time. Both kids who are bullied and who bully others may have serious, lasting problems. 
  • In order to be considered bullying, the behavior must be aggressive and include:
    • An Imbalance of Power: Kids who bully use their power—such as physical strength, access to embarrassing information, or popularity—to control or harm others. Power imbalances can change over time and in different situations, even if they involve the same people.
    • Repetition: Bullying behaviors happen more than once or have the potential to happen more than once.
  • Bullying includes actions such as making threats, spreading rumors, attacking someone physically or verbally, and excluding someone from a group on purpose.
effects of bullying
Effects of Bullying
  • Bullying can affect everyone—those who are bullied, those who bully, and those who witness bullying. Bullying is linked to many negative outcomes including impacts on mental health, substance use, and suicide. It is important to talk to kids to determine whether bullying—or something else—is a concern.
prevention programs for the community
Prevention Programs for the Community
  • Community Action Planning
    • The Community Action Toolkit includes materials to create a community event using the research, ideas and bullying prevention and response strategies (http://www.stopbullying.gov/prevention/in-the-community/community-action-planning/index.html)
prevention in schools
Prevention in Schools
  • "Matt's Safe School Law," a law passed in 2011 to address bullying in schools.
    • The law requires districts to have a bullying policy in place and calls for informing parents of both parties involved in a bullying incident.
prevention in schools1
Prevention in Schools
  • Bullying can threaten students’ physical and emotional safety at school and can negatively impact their ability to learn.
  • The best way to address bullying is to stop it before it starts.
    • Assess Bullying in Your School  
    • Engage Parents and Youth  
    • Create Policies and Rules  
    • Build a Safe Environment  
    • Educate Students and School Staff 
      • (http://www.stopbullying.gov/prevention/at-school/index.html)
prevention in schools2
Prevention in Schools
  • Guide for Educators
    • (http://www.bullyfree.com/site/files/BullyFree_EducatorGuide.pdf)
  • Ready, Set, Respect! - A toolkit for elementary educators
    • Developed to help elementary educators ensure that all students feel safe and respected and develop respectful attitudes and behaviors. This resource provides a set of tools to help educators prepare themselves for teaching about respect to students at the elementary school level.
      • (http://www.glsen.org/cgi-bin/iowa/all/library/record/2833.html?state=tools&type=educator)
  • Safe Space Kit
    • Designed to help educators create a safe space for LGBT youth in schools, this guide provides concrete strategies for supporting LGBT students, educating about anti-LGBT bias and advocating for changes in your school. The kit also shows how to assess the school's climate, policies and practices and outlines ways to advocate for change inside the school.
      • (http://www.glsen.org/cgi-bin/iowa/all/library/record/1641.html?state=tools&type=educator)
  • There are two kinds of cyberbullying, direct attacks (messages sent to your kids directly) and cyberbullying by proxy (using others to help cyberbully the victim, either with or without the accomplice's knowledge). Because cyberbullying by proxy often gets adults involved in the harassment, it is much more dangerous.
    • http://www.stopcyberbullying.org/how_it_works/index.html
    • http://www.stopbullying.gov/cyberbullying/how-to-report/index.html
responding to bullying
Responding to Bullying
  • When adults respond quickly and consistently to bullying behavior, they send the message that it is not acceptable. Research shows this can stop bullying behavior over time.
responding to bullying1
Responding to Bullying



  • Intervene immediately. It is ok to get another adult to help.
  • Separate the kids involved.
  • Make sure everyone is safe.
  • Meet any immediate medical or mental health needs.
  • Stay calm. Reassure the kids involved, including bystanders.
  • Model respectful behavior when you intervene.
  • Don’t ignore it. Don’t think kids can work it out without adult help.
  • Don’t immediately try to sort out the facts.
  • Don’t force other kids to say publicly what they saw.
  • Don’t question the children involved in front of other kids.
  • Don’t talk to the kids involved together, only separately.
  • Don’t make the kids involved apologize or patch up relations on the spot.
resources for students
Resources for Students
  • Guide for Elementary Students
    • (http://www.bullyfree.com/site/files/BullyFree_ElementaryStudentGuide.pdf)
  • Be More than a Bystander
    • (http://www.stopbullying.gov/respond/be-more-than-a-bystander/index.html)
  • Beyond Bullies – Teen Confidential Chat with Youth Mentors
    • (http://beyondbullies.tumblr.com)
resources for families
Resources for Families
  • Guide for Parents
    • (http://www.bullyfree.com/site/files/BullyFree_ParentGuide.pdf)
  • Tips for Parents
    • (http://www.bullyfree.com/free-resources/tips-for-parents)
  • Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG)
    • (http://community.pflag.org/Page.aspx?pid=194&srcid=-2)
books about bullying
Books About Bullying

Grades 1-2

Grades 3-5

  • Billy Bully - by Ana Galan Alvaro Galan
  • The Bully Blockers Club - by Teresa Bateman
  • Bully Trouble - by Joanna Cole
  • Bye-Bye, Big Bad Bullybug! - by Ed Emberley
  • Chrysanthemum - by Kevin Henkes
  • Pinky & Rex and the Bully - by James Howe
  • Stand Tall, Molly Lou Melon - by Patty Lovell
  • Stephanie's Ponytail - by Robert N. Munsch
  • Stop Picking on Me - by Pat Thomas Lesley Harker
  • Trouble in the Barkers' Class - by TomiedePaola
  • Agnes Parker...Girl in Progress - by Kathleen O'Dell
  • Big Bad Bruce - by Bill Peet
  • Bozo the Clone - by Dan Greenburg
  • The Bully from the Black Lagoon - by Mike Thaler
  • The Dodgeball Chronicles - by Frank Cammuso
  • Jake Drake, Bully Buster - by Andrew Clements
  • Secret Identity - by Wendelin Van Draanen
  • Super Emma - by Sally Warner


  • Aftab, Parry. (n.d.). How cyberbullying works. Retrieved from http://www.stopcyberbullying.org/how_it_works/index.html
  • Aftab, Parry. (n.d.). Report cyberbullying. Retrieved from http://www.stopbullying.gov/cyberbullying/how-to-report/index.html
  • Beane, Allan L. (2011). Together we can be bully-free : A mini-guide for educators. Retrieved from http://www.bullyfree.com/site/files/BullyFree_EducatorGuide.pdf
  • Beane, Allan L. (2011). Together we can be bully-free: A mini-guide for elementary school students. Retrieved from http://www.bullyfree.com/site/files/BullyFree_ElementaryStudentGuide.pdf
  • Bully Free Systems. (n.d.). Tips for parents. Retrieved from http://www.bullyfree.com/free-resources/tips-for-parents
  • GLSEN, Inc. (2013). Ready, Set, Respect! - A toolkit for elementary educators. Retrieved from http://www.glsen.org/cgi-bin/iowa/all/news/record/2833.html
  • GLSEN, Inc. (2012). Safe Space Kit. Retrieved from http://www.glsen.org/cgi-bin/iowa/all/library/record/1641.html?state=tools&type=educator
  • Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG). (2012). Retrieved from http://community.pflag.org/Page.aspx?pid=194&srcid=-2
citations cont d
Citations cont’d.
  • Scholastic. (n.d.). Books about bullying: Grades 3-5. Retrieved from http://www.scholastic.com/resources/booklist/books-about-bullying-grades-3-5/
  • Scholastic. (n.d.). Books about bullying: Grades 1-2. http://www.scholastic.com/resources/booklist/books-about-bullying-grades-1-2/
  • U.S. Department of Health & Human Services. (n.d.). Bullying definition. Retrieved from http://www.stopbullying.gov/what-is-bullying/definition/index.html
  • U.S. Department of Health & Human Services. (n.d.). Effects of bullying. Retrieved from http://www.stopbullying.gov/at-risk/effects/index.html
  • U.S. Department of Health & Human Services. (n.d.). Stop bullying on the spot. Retrieved from http://www.stopbullying.gov/respond/on-the-spot/index.html
  • U.S. Department of Health & Human Services. (n.d.). Respond to bullying. Retrieved from http://www.stopbullying.gov/respond/index.html
  • U.S. Department of Health & Human Services. (n.d.). Be more than a bystander. Retrieved from http://www.stopbullying.gov/respond/be-more-than-a-bystander/index.html
  • U.S. Department of Health & Human Services. (n.d.). Community action planning. Retrieved from http://www.stopbullying.gov/prevention/in-the-community/community-action-planning/index.html
  • U.S. Department of Health & Human Services. (n.d.). Prevention at school. Retrieved from http://www.stopbullying.gov/prevention/at-school/index.html