Posts tagged coping with bullying

The New Girl and the Mean Girl: How Bullying Can Last for a Lifetime


As if this post were not compelling enough, I love the outpouring this author gets from her readers in the Comments section. Just wish she has had this support when she was hiding in the newspaper office in middle school!

This is a great read for kids to help them understand the long-term impact of bullying and to get them talking about the difference an upstander/ally/hero/brave soul could have made in this author’s life. It’s also a terrific read for any adult-those who can relate to the writer’s experience and those who can be inspired to prevent another child from growing up with this kind of hurt and loneliness.

What Parents Need to Know to Protect Their Children from Bullying


With just 3 days left before the publication of Friendship & Other Weapons, please check out this HuffingtonPost article on helping kids develop a positive future orientation:

Turning Bystanders Into Heroes


Try this activity to help kids understand how important their role as a bystander–er, HERO, is in a bullying situation.

Give a child 5 wooden craft sticks.

Ask him to write his name on the first one. Then, tell him to break the stick. The task should be easy.

Emphasize that on our own, we are breakable.

Next, ask each child to write down the names of three people who they know they can count on for friendship and support, on three of the remaining sticks. It can be a parent, family member, friend, or even a pet.

On the remaining craft stick, ask the child to write something that they are good at, such as a sport, art, or even being a good friend to others.

Have the child stack his four sticks, one on top of the other, then challenge him to again try to break the sticks. This time, the task should be impossible.

When I do this activity with kids, usually in schools or troop settings–the expressions on the their faces as they realize the strength of the stacked sticks is priceless every time. I know my point has been made. But I say it anyway:


“When you support one another, and have confidence in your own abilities, you become unbreakable. Keep these craft sticks as a reminder of how strong you truly are!”


My other reminder/mantra to kids, when we talk about bullying and bystanding, is that it is never OK to do nothing about bullying I have kids repeat the phrase.  I encourage them to shout it.  Sometimes, we see if the whole building can hear us!  I want kids to remember this truism.

This week, in light of the child sexual abuse scandal at Penn State University, it seems especially important.


For more ideas and activites to help kids cope with bullying, please check out Friendship & Other Weapons: Group Activities to Help Young Girls Cope with Bullying, available November 15, 2011.



Teaching Compassion to Kids


Experts agree that fostering compassion in young people is among the best ways to prevent verbal, physical, and emotional bullying.  Check out my post on Psychology Today, featuring seven ways to help develop compassion as a character trait and behavioral style in your child:

Girl Scouts Know How to Be Friends Indeed!


This morning, I had the GREAT honor and pleasure of doing a workshop for about 120 Girl Scouts and their moms (ages 5-11), based on some of the lessons and activities in Friendship & Other Weapons.  We focused on specific ways that the girls can become allies to someone who is being bullied both before, during, and after bullying situations.  In less than 10 minutes, the amazing girls came up with over 60 ways to be a friend to someone who is being bullied!  They also learned that:

It is never OK to do nothing about bullying!

Here are a few of the “How to Be a Friend” and “Stop Bullying” posters they left with me to share with you.  Please check the Bullying in Elementary School link to see more and to find out how to schedule a Friendship & Other Weapons workshop for your group of girls.


Stopping Bullying: Turning Passive Bystanders Into Powerful Allies


I am loving AC360’s special series this week on stopping bullying–especially the exploration of sociologist Robert Faris’ study that focuses on bystanders as change agents.  We can teach kids specific skills for becoming allies before, during, and after incidents of bullying!   This is one of the focus areas in the Friendship & Other Weapons curriculum and the main emphasis in the Mother-Daughter workshop I will be doing for the Girl Scouts of Eastern PA on 10/22.

Check out last night’s AC360 segment: <object width=”416″ height=”374″ classid=”clsid:D27CDB6E-AE6D-11cf-96B8-444553540000″ id=”ep”><param name=”allowfullscreen” value=”true” /><param name=”allowscriptaccess” value=”always” /><param name=”wmode” value=”transparent” /><param name=”movie” value=”” /><param name=”bgcolor” value=”#000000″ />[cnnvideo url=’’ inline=’true’]</object>

Sticks & Stones: A Four Year Old’s First Experience with Bullying


Check me out on the Huff Post:

No, seriously, please check me out there.  It’s job security.

Read it.  Tweet it.  Share it.  Like it.

I’m so bossy.


‘Twas the Night Before Kindergarten Part I: What Parents Can Expect from the School Year


You’ve spent the summer calmly reassuring your nervous Kindergartener-to-be about the approaching school year. Together, you attended orientation and shopped for back-to-school clothing. Your child is ready to see what this “elementary-school thing” is all about, but what about you? As a parent, what can you expect from your child’s Kindergarten experience? (more…)

Rachel Simmons Offers Tip for Parents on Teenage Girls’ Use of Social Media


Click below to listen to Odd Girl Out author Rachel Simmons’ NPR interview on Teenage Girls & Social Media.

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