Helping Students to be Upstanders at Stratford School

On February 7, 2014 by Rebecca Whyte

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Bullying among school age children happens frequently in America, in both public and private schools, and it can have a serious, lasting affect on everyone – those who are bullied, those who bully, and those who witness bullying.

Bullying is defined as “unwanted, aggressive behavior among school aged children that involves a real or perceived power imbalance. The behavior is repeated, or has the potential to be repeated over time.”

Stratford School wants to make sure our entire community is equipped to handle bullying. In order to do this, we incorporate anti bullying assemblies into our extracurricular program – and we continually strive to ensure everyone knows what to do in an instance of bullying!

In January 2014, Stratford School invited Soren Bennick’s The Power of One to our middle schools for an anti bullying assembly performance. The Power of One is a series of skits presented by actors who portray what bullying is, what can be done about it, and how every child has the power to report on and deal with bullying when they see it. “The two actors were excellent. The assembly was engaging, upbeat, and fun. The content was quite serious but the actors managed to keep the kids involved and enthusiastic.” – Maggie Schwartz, Middle School Principal at Stratford School – San Jose. Below are a few key takeaways from The Power of One performance:

Roles of bullying:

  • Bully
  • Target
  • Bystander

Types of bullying:

  • Verbal – teasing, name calling, taunting, threatening
  • Social – leaving someone out on purpose, telling others not to be friends with someone, embarrassing someone in public
  • Physical – hitting, tripping, pushing, taking or breaking someone’s things, making mean or rude hand gestures
  • Cyber – mean text messages or emails, rumors sent by email or posted on a social site, or embarrassing pictures or videos

How to stop bullying on the spot (for children):

  • Treat others the way you would like to be treated
  • Remember that individual action can make the world a safer, better place
  • Be clear about how a bully is making you feel and firmly ask them to stop
  • Remember that targets need help and intervention
  • Encourage others not to be bystanders

How to stop bullying on the spot (for parents):

  • Intervene immediately
  • Separate the kids involved
  • Make sure everyone is safe
  • Meet any immediate health needs
  • Stay calm
  • Model respectful behavior

Here is a YouTube video clip of The Power of One anti bullying performance at Stratford School:

The Power of One:

US Department of Health & Human Services – Stop Bullying:

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