Although bullying has been in the news, chances are your children still do not seek your assistance if they are being bullied. They would rather curl up in the safety of their own bed and plead sickness rather than going out and facing the consequences revealed to them by their oppressors.
It has come to the country’s attention that an average of 160,000 students all around the United States alone have developed such terror that they will stay home away from school just so they will not have to face their tormentors. For a variety of reasons, parents or other caregivers may not pick up on the fact that their child is being bullied.
Peter J. Goodman, author of We’re All Different But We’re All Kitty Cats stated that “Children may avoid speaking up about being bullied, which really just helps to perpetuate it. It is important for teachers and parents to know that bullying is taking place so that they can try to address it, but sometimes it is difficult for them to find out that it is happening in the first place.”
According to Goodman, there are five common reasons that children do not take adults into their confidence. The following represent those reasons:
- They may think that they are tattling on another student, and they have been taught not to tattle. It is important that children learn the difference between tattling about unimportant things and telling an adult when bullying is taking place.
- Children may fear retaliation if they tell an adult they are being bullied. While the adult may address the issue with the child doing the bullying, there is going to be another time right around the corner when the adult is not around. Children may fear that things could get worse if the issue is addressed.
- Some children feel that they will not be believed. They believe that they will tell an adult and the person will not believe them or will suggest that maybe they did something to bring it on.
- Many children believe that telling an adult does nothing to help with the bullying. The research tends to support the notion that many adults don’t do anything about the bullying, or they simply brush it off, tell them to toughen up, or say that it is just a part of growing up. If children learn early on that adults don’t help, then they are not likely to report the incidents.
- When children are bullied, they may feel ashamed or embarrassed. This alone can keep them from reporting it, because they don’t want people to know that they were being bullied.
Peter developed a new curriculum with Karen Goldberg’s assistance. Karen is a child psychotherapist and co-author of the curriculum. She states, “Around half of the children who are bullied don’t end up telling an adult that it’s happening. The more we can understand and address the reasons behind them not telling, the closer we will be to helping to solve the bullying problem our nation’s schools face.”
The bullying curriculum and The Kitty Cats book has been designed for children in pre-kindergarten through third grade, provides a foundation for classrooms throughout the country. It encompasses a combination of children’s book in addition to the accompanying curriculum, Bully Free Students Make Bully Free Classrooms. Together, it is hoped, that children will be able to understand, address and prevent bullying and that may lead them to feel freer to express their concerns to children, teachers or other caregivers. The other hope is that if children are taught early that the knowledge will continue to build through the balance of their formative years; the trust they build with adults, too.
If this would be something you could use at home, there is a way to get it. To learn more about the book series, the curriculum bundle, or to purchase the volume that addresses bullying, visit www.dreambigpress.com.