October is National Bullying Prevention Month

National Bullying Prevention Month

Twenty percent of US high school students reported being bullied on school property over the past year (Source: National Day Today https://nationaltoday.com/national-bullying-prevention-month/). On the long list of things that teachers are responsible for, there are few that are more important than helping to prevent bullying. And, at least in my experience, there are fewer things we are less trained to do. October is National Bullying Prevention Month (shouldn’t that be every month?)

What is bullying

Bullying is repeated, unwanted aggressive behavior that involves a real or perceived power imbalance. It includes actions such as making threats, spreading rumors, physical attacks, verbal attacks, and exclusion from a group. Bullying can be in person or can take place through technology, i.e. cyberbullying.

What can schools do?

  • Intervene immediately. Separate the kids involved, make sure everyone is safe. Stay calm, reassure the kids involved but don’t try to sort out the facts immediately, according to StopBullying.gov.
  • Model respectful behavior and reward students who show respect. Positive reinforcement works.
  • Plan bullying prevention programs so that students (and teachers) know how to recognize bullying and how to confront bullying.
  • Wear blue on October 3rd for the kickoff of World Bullying Prevention Month.
  • Participate in Unity Day, October 10th, is a day in which people around the country wear orange is support of students who have been bullied.
  • Read:
    • Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher tells the story of a high school girl who takes her own life after being bullied.
    • This is Where it Ends by Marieke Nijkamp tells the story of a bullied teenager who creates a plan to exact revenge on the people who bullied him.
    • Moxie by Jennifer Mathieu tells the story of a girl who confronts bullying at her high school.
    • The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton is the classic bullying book written in 1967. It tells the story of Ponyboy who finds himself on the outside of society looking in.

Additional anti-bullying resources

Here is an index of resources on bullying prevention in middle schools.

  • The Be More Than A Bystander program helps students identify ways that they can prevent and confront bullying.
  • Run Walk Roll is a virtual walkathon with the intent of spreading information about how to make the world kinds, more accepting, and more inclusive.
  • Stop Bullying Video Challenge – $2000 prize for the best 60 second video explaining how students are taking action against bullying.
  • Delete Cyberbullying Scholarship – The Delete Cyberbullying Scholarship is offered to high school students who submit a creative application based on their commitment to eliminating cyberbullying.
  • The Office of Population Affairs has several resources on adolescent mental health.
  • StopBullying.gov has resources to help address bullying in the schools, at home, and in the community.
  • STOMP Out Bullying contains a huge assortment of resources dedicated to reducing and preventing bullying.
  • PACER’s National Bullying Prevention Center is designed to prevent bullying for children with disabilities.
  • The Bully Project is an anti-bullying movement based on the 2011 documentary “Bully.”
  • DoSomething.org is designed to give power to young adults to make a difference without needing money or help from adults. Their program, The Bully Text, is a text messaging role playing game.
  • Mean Stinks is a national program held on October 23rd to prevent girl on girl bullying.


Click here to add resources to this list!


Published by JustAddH2OTeacher

Science teacherpreneur

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