Bullying has always been an issue in schools. Recently it has gained more attention. I believe this is due to the increased presence of social media in society in today. I was in 8th grade when I got my Facebook account, and only in 6th grade when I got my first MySpace account. Lately, kids have been creating these personal social media accounts at younger ages. These social medias accounts are also more accessible to younger students because of the increase in number of children that have smartphones. There have been many cases throughout the US where students have been cyber-bullied. Everyone has been trying to combat bullying and find a solution to it, but I don’t believe that we can fully find a solution to it because it all comes down to each individual bully’s behavior. We cannot make some one change their behavior because we simply cannot control everyone. While I agree that bullying is an issue, I don’t believe that I can be the solution.
I feel that elementary teachers can help be a positive influence in fighting bullying in schools. Behaviors are learned at a young age. Chances are that if there is a bully in high school, they learned those behaviors long ago because humans are creatures of habit. One way that I will try to combat bullying in my classroom is by making sure that each child is included. One of the things that I would like to implement in my classroom is by changing assigned seating each week. I would ask my students to each give me two names of classmates that they would like to sit by next week. This will allow me to find patterns and see which child(ren) is/are left out. I will then do what I can to include those that are often left out or that are isolated and have them interact with the students they don’t normally talk to. I would also like to have the kids pick who the helper of the week would be each week. I would make sure that each student gets the opportunity to be the helper, but I would like to see which students are “popular” and which students seem to be more isolated from the others. This would also allow me to try to intervene and include the isolated students and prevent the isolation from getting worse.
There are just a few things that every teacher can try to do to prevent bullying from occurring or getting worse, but ultimately, the decision to end bullying comes from the bullies themselves.