Bullying and Bully Prevention

A student being bullied at school

Bullies have always been a constant presence in school environments. Until recently, bullies were simply an expected “character” in schools — along with the “teacher’s pet” or “class clown.”  Students who were bullied were expected to “toughen up,” ignore the behavior, or “fight back.” Today, bullying behavior is no longer expected or accepted in most… Read More

As educators, we have a professional and ethical responsibility to provide students with safe, equitable, and inclusive academic experiences. Traditional discipline procedures, such as zero-tolerance policies, school suspensions, and punishment-reward practices are often ineffective in correcting misbehaviors and disproportionately impact students of color. For these reasons, the paradigm is shifting from zero-tolerance policies in schools… Read More

It’s unfortunate but true: every school deals with cases of bullying. Cyberbullying is also a widespread issue, and many learning communities struggle with both forms of mistreatment. But some schools are testing out more innovative methods, yielding positive results here in the U.S. and abroad. Let’s look at a few examples to see what’s working… Read More

How Teens Can Benefit From Recess

By Kara Wyman, MEd October 8, 2018

When we think of recess and playtime, most of us think of cute little kids on the playground. But couldn’t our middle and high school students benefit from a break too? Adolescents often face a variety of challenges and, while I’m not suggesting we get teens on monkey bars or force a game of tag,… Read More

Engaging Families in Social-Emotional Learning

By Jennifer Gunn May 21, 2018

Daniel Goleman, the author of the book Emotional Intelligence: Why It Can Matter More Than IQ, states that “Family life is our first school for emotional learning.“ It’s through family that “we learn how to feel about ourselves and how others will react to our feelings; how to think about these feelings and what choices… Read More

When students act out in class, there’s often a trigger. And those triggers can be rooted in adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) that can have long-term effects such as cognitive and social-emotional impairment, high-risk behaviors, social issues, and even disease, according to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. Understanding these triggers and what to… Read More

Why We Really Need SEL (Social-Emotional Learning) Now

By The SHARE Team May 14, 2018

We live in a stressful world, and our nation’s children and young adults are coping with new and prevalent emotional realities we can’t ignore. Research indicates that when educators work to teach learners how to alleviate and manage stress, students become more likely to learn deeply, avoid negative behaviors and achieve successful outcomes with long-term… Read More

As a parent, it’s painful to see children sitting alone on the playground. I remember my own kindergarten days when I read on the playground because I didn’t yet have a friend, or I think of my kids and hope that recess is the fun playtime it should be for them. Students build social skills… Read More

Character.org is a non-profit organization dedicated to K-12 character education, a field that includes ethics, civics and social-emotional learning. “As our society continues to become more diverse and increasingly global, these core values are essential in home, schools and workplaces,” said CEO Becky Sipos. “Despite this shift, we continue to hear an emphasis on grit… Read More

Alexandra Penn, founder and crisis intervention specialist at Champions Against Bullying (CAB), urges teachers to use lesson plans that include tools for building confidence and self-esteem and discuss the importance of friendship and understanding individual differences. “We may look different, observe different holidays [and] dress differently, but inside we all want to belong and fit… Read More

Just for APs: Teaching Alternatives to Fighting and Tattling

By Terry Wilhelm January 20, 2015

I’ve discussed a variety of actions I took as a principal who worked without an assistant principal to change a culture of fighting at an elementary school. Another component of my long-term work on this problem was to implement response alternatives to provocations that could lead to fighting but also to tattling, which is a… Read More

Perhaps the most controversial action I took as a principal addressing my school’s fighting culture was imposing a new kind of consequence upon the fighters: cooperating on a project. To help accomplish this, I used our school’s full-time school community liaison (CL), funded from a grant, who worked in a variety of roles with parents… Read More

Just for APs: Fighting Culture Interventions

By Terry Wilhelm September 23, 2014

To describe the fighting culture of an elementary school when I first arrived as principal, I mentioned that fighters were usually brought to my office in pairs. Sometimes the fight had become a more widespread brawl, especially when it had started on the basketball court. On my second or third day on the job, ten… Read More

Just for APs: Changing a Culture of Fighting

By Terry Wilhelm August 26, 2014

As a new elementary school principal, I found upon my arrival that a significant number of my students, especially boys, had a propensity to solve any disagreement or conflict by fighting. I hit the ground running! Reactive response to student fights are an energy drain for principals and APs Having no assistant principal, this meant… Read More

How Teachers Can Prevent Cyberbullying

By Brian Gatens March 3, 2014

In the past several years, we’ve seen the tide turn significantly in our efforts to put a stop to bullying and make schools emotionally safe environments for all of our students. Yet we cannot forget that some of this bad behavior has moved out of school and onto the Internet. I believe educators and our… Read More