Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Tackling BULLIES in School! A Teaching Resource and a FREEBIE!

Your school year has begun, and you have a new crew of students that you are working to learn more about every day!  You have created a seating chart, learned student names, taught those first lessons, and things seem off to a successful start.  Then out of no where, you get wind that things aren't as copacetic as you thought, your students are having issues and bullying behavior is under way.  What do you do?

I have found the first days of school to be magical, but quickly learn that negative peer interactions and strained friendships can derail a school day for my students before they have even gotten started in the classroom.  So I have armed myself with a few tools that I can utilize on the fly.


I have found that many of the novels I LOVE to share with my students incorporate bullying, which inspired this teaching resource. I want my students to 1) recognize bullying behavior, and 2) have tools to respond. These CHIT CHAT cards will encourage both of those goals.

While you don't have to read these novels, I have found various scenarios of bullying from popular novels and shared these scenes in order to generate discussion with my students through these CHIT CHAT CARDS. I want them to be able to identify bullying behavior and determine how they would respond if they were a witness or observer. Students will simply: read the scene shared on the card, discuss the scenario, and respond based on the focus questions on the chit chat cards.  You can utilize these with partners, small groups, or for whole class discussion.  You will have nothing to grade, but everything to gain in the positive peer relations you will help develop in your classroom environment.


 As a language arts teacher, bullying is a topic that also inspires strong feelings in writing.  Capitalize on that with these FREEBIE journal prompts.  


If you are looking for novels that incorporate bullying into the plot, check these out...

Bud, Not Buddy by Christopher Paul Curtis
Crash by Jerry Spinelli 
Stargirl by Jerry Spinelli
The Lottery Rose by Irene Hunt
The Tiger Rising by Kate DiCamillo
The Whipping Boy by Sid Fleischman
Wringer by Jerry Spinelli

We can't change that bullying exists, but we can do everything in our power to help our students see the impact and work to change a bullying culture in a positive way.

Best of luck this school year!

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