In Focus: School Violence...|
by the Editors at Weekly Reader's Current Health 1
How Do You Stop a Bully?
Who can forget the killings at Colorado's Columbine High School? And now the shootings in San Diego? Reports that followed Columbine said that the student killers targeted minorities and athletes as the objects of their hate and prejudice.
Not all prejudice ends in violence, of course. But it does frequently end in bullying behavior. Bullies are people who may feel inferior and need to prove something. They get a feeling of power by scaring or bossing other kids around. Sometimes they pick on kids who are ethnically different or are non-athletic "nerds." Sometimes bullies target people for no apparent reason.
If a bully is bothering or threatening you, here are some steps you can take to protect yourself:
- Travel in groups. Walk with a friend when going to and from school. Bullies often pick on kids who are alone.
- Go to a peer mediator, if your school has a peer mediation program. An impartial third party will help the two of you work on a solution you both can agree on.
- Talk to your school's social worker. Maybe he or she can help you figure out why you are being picked on and suggest what you can do about it. Use humor. If threats are mild, try to laugh them off or make a joke. This may not work in severe cases.
- Raise your voice. Shout out loud if you're afraid you are going to be hurt. The bully may back off if he or she thinks someone can overhear you.
- Tell an adult. You can't always handle a bully by yourself. If someone is threatening you, you may need outside help from a teacher, principal, or parent.
About Current Health I, from the Weekly Reader...
Current Health I, a Weekly Reader publication founded in 1978, offers a Health Curriculum to fourth through seventh graders in a magazine format. A second publication, Current Health II, is written for older students. Weekly Reader is the largest and oldest publisher of classroom periodicals. Our mission has not changed since Charles P. Davis founded the first Weekly Reader Corporation publication, Current Events, in 1902. Note Davis' first editorial of May 20, 1902: "Every issue of our newspaper will have "something important to tell to boys and girls. It will awaken their interest in the great world in which they live, give them a broader view of life, fit them for good citizenship, and help equip them for success."
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