Classroom guidance and discussion is an invaluable way to explore ideas and issues while building communication and social skills. During the 2010-2011 school year the students at Blakeney Elementary School will be learning not only how to become "Bully Detectives" so they can recognize bullying behaviors at school, but they also have been learning how to ask for help if they are the target of this kind of behavior at school. BULLY DETECTIVE TRAINING IS COMING TO BES!!! Bullying among children, even among the youngest students, happens more often than most people think. In primary grades, bullying typically consists of children hitting, pushing, or shoving one another. Teasing, name-calling or playing mean tricks is also bullying behavior. The young children who engage in these actions rarely think of themselves as bullies. Because friends are so important at this age, sometimes peers agree and go along with the unkind behavior even though they know the behavior is wrong and they really do not like the bully. The guidance lesson entitled "See a Bully! Stop a Bully!" is designed to show students how to recognize when they or other children are acting like a bully and why such behavior needs to stop. The video based lessons quickly engage children's interest when the host, Detective Bill E. Finder describes himself as a specialist in finding and stopping bullies. Promising that they can do the same so they can become an official Junior Bully Detective, he leads them to investigate and study some cases of bullies in action. When the training is done, he assures them that they will be able to recognize a bully when they see one, understand how bullies make others feel, and know how other kids really feel about bullies.
Ask teachers who works with young children to name the problem they struggle with most, and more often than not, tattling tops the list. After surveying some parents, I learned that the majority of parents can relate because even though tattling among siblings and playmates is on a much smaller scale than in the average classroom, it can be just as persistent - and just as frustrating for the grown-ups who are called upon to mediate.
Tattling is normal in young children. Children tattle as they start to acquire social skills and try to incorporate important lessons learned from the adults in their lives about following rules and being well-behaved. This sometimes leads to their getting a bit carried away!! A child is tattling when he or she complains to an adult about another child's actions.
NOTE TO TEACHERS AND PARENTS
Children tattle for a variety of reasons, including:
Children struggle with tattling issues becuase they lack effective tools and tactics. Many times adults mistakenly assume that ignoring tattling is the best approach; others send the tattletale off to deal with the conflict independently. These adult tactics in the "tattle battle" are usually ineffective because most young children lack the necessary skills and strategies to handle even the kid-sized problems on their own. Our December guidance lesson was designed to help the students begin to develop skills and strategies to properly resolve problems that arise with friends and siblings.
We used the wonderful book..Don't Squeal Unless It's a Big Deal to help the kids figure out the difference between problems, or "BIG DEALS" that need telling, and "kid-sized" problems that kids should be able to work out themselves.