During November, volunteer parents read the book Say Something by Peggy Moss in your child’s classroom. In Say Something, the narrator sees and hears teasing, put-downs, pushing, excluding and other forms of bullying behaviors at her school. She doesn’t do anything at first. However, her responses change as she gains understanding and empathy.
The book’s message to say something is a call to action for all of us to move from the passive role of bystander to the positive, active role of UP-stander. Students discussed their power to become UP-standers who support and include every student at our school so that everyone belongs and feels safe.
Here are some of the ways to be an UP-stander:
- Refuse to join in with bullying behaviors.
- Use positive peer influence to help friends “do the right thing.”
- Say or do something when someone needs help. (Just standing next to someone will make him/her feel better!)
- Help all kids join the fun. Invite someone new to play!
- Help friends find positive things to do and say.
- Laughing and joking with friends is fun but laughing at a friend can hurt.
- Help kids “save face” when they are in a tough spot. Help them get away and be safe.
- Always get an adult if there is violence or a weapon!
Students also had an opportunity, during a school-wide lunchtime activity, to suggest their ideas for upstander behaviors, faced with real-life situations (photo attached).
We hope you will talk with your child about being an UP-stander. Ideas reinforce the message at home:
- Talk about ways that each family member is an UP-stander at home!
- Review the Bully Triangle with your family (attached).
- Role-play different scenarios to practice UP-stander behaviors, words you can say, and actions to take if someone needs your help.
- Review ways to be a bucket filler and swim free of bully behaviors.
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