Ways to get on top of bul­ly­ing be­hav­iour

The Leader (Tasman) - - CONVERSATIONS - BRENDA HOLDAWAY

Un­for­tu­nately, there are lots of bul­lies out there and bul­ly­ing be­hav­iour can be­gin from a very young age.

As par­ents, it is vi­tal that we sup­port our chil­dren to un­der­stand that this sort of be­hav­iour is un­ac­cept­able and teach them skills to use in­stead of bul­ly­ing to get what the bul­ly­ing was achiev­ing.

Chil­dren who bully need to be dis­ci­plined for the be­hav­iour through the use of con­se­quences, how­ever they also need to have strate­gies they can use in­stead.

A good ex­am­ple is when a child bul­lies to im­press on­look­ers.

He wants to show he is part of the group so he picks on some­one who is dif­fer­ent. If this isn’t stopped then the bully will con­tinue to be­have in this man­ner.

How­ever, if you dis­ci­pline the bully by en­sur­ing they miss out on some­thing they en­joy do­ing, they are learn­ing that there is a con­se­quence for that neg­a­tive be­hav­iour. Along with ap­ply­ing a con­se­quence, you also need to sup­port the child to learn skills to make friends and fit in such as:

How to ap­proach peers and how to ask to join in their game

How to say pos­i­tive thing about other peo­ple

How to play games and prac­tice turn tak­ing?

How to be a good sport

How to be em­pa­thetic to oth­ers. Good so­cial skills as an an­ti­dote to bul­ly­ing.

Brenda Holdaway is the Whanau Fa­cil­i­ta­tor with Nel­son Tas­man Kinder­gartens.

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