Bul­ly­ing preven­tion

North Penn Life - - Front Page - By Bradley Sch­legel bschlegel@jour­nal­reg­is­ter.com

The day for Mont­gomery El­e­men­tary School students be­gan with one teacher teas­ing an­other on stage, ac­cord­ing to guid­ance coun­selor Toby Sterling.

She said the skit — a bully preven­tion show held Mon­day morn­ing dur­ing an all-school assem­bly that kicked off the Ol­weus Bul­ly­ing Preven­tion Pro­gram (OBPPF — got the students’ at­ten­tion, ac­cord­ing to Sterling.

“Their eyes got real wide,” she said.

In the af­ter­noon, students at­tended a Box Out Bul­ly­ing assem­bly in the gym­na­sium.

The pre­sen­ta­tion, which uses in­ter­ac­tive theater to im­pact the students, de­fined bul­ly­ing and di­rected students to in­form a par­ent or teacher about any bul­ly­ing is­sues.

It also sug­gested that learn­ing to em­pathize for those left out or dif­fer­ent would help solve the prob­lem.

“If you know about other peo­ple’s feel­ings or prob­lems, you’re more likely to help them,” said Jeremy Ruben­stein, one of two per­form­ers and the pro­gram’s founder.

Most bul­lies have been bul­lied or picked on them­selves, ac­cord­ing to Ruben­stein.

He also asked the students not to make oth­ers feel left out or spread gos­sip.

“Words can hurt,” Ru- ben­stein said dur­ing the show.

At the end of the day, the en­tire stu­dent body re­assem­bled to dis­cuss what they learned, ac­cord­ing to Sterling.

She said that in be­tween, the students watched a video and col­ored a num­ber one, which would be hung out­side the li­brary.

All students and staff wore an Ol­weus T-shirt — de­signed by two school students — pro­mot­ing “rnity Against Bul­ly­ing,” ac­cord­ing to a news re­lease from the North Penn School Dis­trict.

“The idea is to teach the students that we are all one school and one community,” Sterling said.

The pro­gram’s main in­tent is to pro­vide students with the proper skills to be­have in a re­spect­ful and re­spon­si­ble manor, ac­cord­ing to Sterling.

She said the idea is to help them be­come re­spon­si­ble cit­i­zens of the world.

“This can re­ally be a life les­son,” she said.

Sterling said the skit with the teach­ers — where one was ridiculed for hav­ing dif­fer­ent hair and shoes while “friends of the bully” watched silently — al­lowed staff mem­bers to stress the abil­ity to by­standers to step up and stop the be­hav­ior.

“Most students who re­main quiet do that be­cause they are afraid of the bully,” she said.

Pho­tos by GE­OFF PATTON

Mont­gomery El­e­men­tary School coun­selor Toby Sterling, left, and in­tern Ash­ley Baker, cen­ter, join teacher Deb Lanza, right, and her first-grade students in­volved in a craft project where they per­son­al­ized a pa­per num­ber one, sym­bol­iz­ing One Community Against Bul­ly­ing, and dis­played it in a school hall­way.

First-grader Ja­clyn Diaz cuts out her num­ber one dur­ing a project sym­bol­iz­ing One Community Against Bul­ly­ing.

Coun­selor Toby Sterling, left, as­sists teacher Deb Lanza and her first-grade students with their anti-bul­ly­ing project Mon­day.

Sixth-grader Mo­laea Good­man, right, col­ors a num­ber one Mon­day as part of the school’s bul­ly­ing preven­tion pro­gram.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.