This week we took part in a variety of anty-bullying activities. We read a number of books with examples of different types of bullying and then we created a "Spot the Bully" list of different things that could be bully behaviour.
Sometimes it's difficult to tell the difference between a bullying situation and conflict. Bullying is "aggressive behaviour that is intentional and that involves an imbalance of power or strength." A conflict is "a fight or disagreement where a resolution can be reached." Conflicts between children happen all the time, and we are always working at giving students the tools to sort out their problems with others (use their words, ask for help, etc.) For example, two children might disagree about whose turn it is to use the swing first. A resolution could be reached by talking it out. However, in a bully situation the bully might persist in shoving this child in the hallway later or tell nasty rumors about that same person again and again. It's a targeted and repeated offence.
Because we will be using new language, you might notice an increase in its usage. Don't be surprised if the children call every incident of conflict a bullying situation, even if it is not. It's sometimes difficult for young children to discern between the two.