Besides doing well academically in school, parents would hope for their children to be socially adept and well liked by their peers as well. But what happens when parents find out their child is a bully in school?
It is important for parents to address this issue and find out why their children are exhibiting such behaviours. It is often due to feelings of insecurity which triggers children to behaving aggressively or undermine others. It could also be due to modeling the behaviour of other peers, to be accepted into a particular social group. The home environment is also another influencing factor in how they behave in school, as they role model behaviours seen at home in school.
Let your child know and understand bullying is not an accepted social behavior. Communicate with your child, and let him or her know that you are there to help. Here are 7 tips to guide you in helping your child:
1. Take the bullying incidents seriously. This lets your child know that such acts will not be tolerated. Establish rules about such acts of behaviours and stick to them.
2. Instill respect and kindness. Let your child know that it is wrong to ridicule others, because they are different.
3. Encourage and explain to your child the need to appreciate individual differences and respect them for who they are. Find opportunities for your child to interact with people who may ‘appear’ different from them. For example, volunteer at a home with people with special needs.
4. Use positive reinforcement. Praise and compliment on their good actions.
5. Be involved in your child’s social life. Know what kind of friends he or she plays with and the activities they do.
6. Talk to his teachers and friends to keep updated on what has been going on in the classroom, and how your child is responding.
7. Set a good example. Show your child you and your spouse is also capable of respecting others despite their differences. Be mindful on how you talk to and about people, and when handling conflicts and problems.
You are your child’s first and most influential role model. His or her behaviors come from what they see at home. Create a home which exemplifies values of love, kindness, and respect. A last important note to remember, such antics and behaviors are not permanent. Take stride in teaching your children and do not be disheartened; have faith in yourself and your child.
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