Young Parents Team
How do I bully-proof my child?
Sharon Alcantra, principal of Brighton Montessori Frankel share the following advice.
Talk to your kid about what a bully is, the different types of bullying, and what to do if it happens to him or even if he witnesses it.
Teach him how to stand up for himself and when to walk away, and not to forget to report such an incident to an adult. Encourage him to be open with you and to talk to you if any unpleasant incident were to happen.
Avoid the “eye for an eye” philosophy, as that is rarely the right thing to do. Instead, teach him to problem-solve by role modelling or having open discussions using books, life stories and more.
Try to understand the reason behind the bullying so you can remove any situations that may encourage this type of behaviour.
For example, if your child is bullied because he brings nice toys to school, then stop doing that. Having a buddy during such “vulnerable” situations may also help to deter more of such incidents from happening.
You can even ask him to befriend the bully.
On your part as the adult, stay calm if he tells you about any bullying incident. Don’t jump to conclusions and try to get the full picture before reacting. There is no need to be a “hero” and handle it on your own – rope in your spouse and family for emotional strength, and ask his teachers or the principal how they handle bullying incidents.
When the same rules are reinforced both at home and in school, it gives your child a better understanding of how bullies should be dealt with.
Related: How to deal with bullying
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