WebMD shared a study on school bullying that showed that almost 90 percent of the children had been bullied; and, more than half of them had bullied their peers. Clearly, bullying in schools has become a ubiquitous problem. Some parents may believe that bullying just covers physical attacks and name-calling. However, exclusion and cyberbullying are forms of bullying and are prevalent — especially with older children and teens.
Unfortunately, some kids do not get the help they need since they fear escalation or being branded as a tattletale. If you suspect your child might be bullied at school, here are some ways to help them.
Research Anti-Bullying Apps
There are lots of smartphone apps that you can add which aid in anti-bullying efforts. For example, some apps let people anonymously report instances of bullying to school officials. These kinds of apps are invaluable because children who fear retaliation will still be able to get help.
Some apps are designed to facilitate a dialogue between children and parents. If your child is always using his or her smartphone, he or she may feel more comfortable opening up about difficult situations through this technology. Some schools have even implemented apps of their own, where teachers, students, and parents can report bullying in real time so staff can intervene.
Contact a company like Argosy Shadow Company for more information about tech resources.
Sign Them up for an Extracurricular Activity They Are Excited About
If your child struggles at school, it's important that they have a safe haven. Besides making your home a place of refuge, encourage your child to choose a sport or club to attend. Let your child pick the activity so you know that he or she will be excited about attending.
While school may be rough, your child can look forward to seeing children with similar interests at this extracurricular activity. Extracurricular activities are especially important for children who are being bullied through methods of exclusion.
Read Books or Watch Movies with Anti-Bullying Messages
Children love stories where they can identify with the protagonist. If you cannot easily establish a dialogue with your child, discussing a book or a movie about children who overcome bullying can help. A great book to check out from the library is Wonder by R. J. Palacio. Wonder is about a boy named Auggie who has Treacher Collins syndrome, a genetic condition that affects a person's appearance. This book has fantastic messages about kindness and inner beauty. One movie you may want to watch with your child is Cyberbully. This film shows how easy it is for kids to bully others and spread rumors quickly online. You and your child can have a chat about being safe online after watching it together.