Teachers’ Toolkit for Handling Sibling Bullying
When I saw that agreeable, friendly child helping his younger brother to pack his backpack, I couldn’t believe that he was a bully to the same brother. But that was what his teacher has told me earlier that morning.
She reported an incident of abuse in which elder child pushed his brother from a swing causing him to break his nose and that that incident was not a standalone event in the history of these boys.
How a young child of kindergarten could purposefully harm his brother and that so repeatedly? That question kept the staff bewildered.
Interestingly, dealing with such children and families starts with answering this same question. Teachers and onlookers need to understand that judging these family dynamics is not going to help these families in any way. In contrast, we need to understand that these events and behaviors are more impulsive than planned.
Step 1: Feel Empathy
And, no, here I am not talking about feeling empathy with the victim only. Bully also need as much empathy and acceptance from teachers as victims do.
The process of intervention in any kind of bullying can only start with acceptance. You have to accept the bully as a child. (There is a difference between accepting the behavior and accepting the person showing the behavior. And this difference is the start of empathy.)
This acceptance, which in turn is pre-requisite for empathy towards a bullying child, comes from understanding the pressure that child was going through. Teachers need to acknowledge that every child has an inert understanding about which behaviors hurt or which ones help. On top of this understanding, children are hardwired to choose good behaviors unless they feel internal or external pressures to choose otherwise.
In most cases of sibling bullying, child feel this pressure because their parents haven’t taught them to navigate through the feelings of jealousy that arise when their siblings join the family. Labeling them as bullies or aggressors only adds to this burden.
When a teacher understands this pressure, they have reason to help the bully not just the victim of bullying.
Step 2: Communicate
Most cases of sibling bullying co-exist with complex family dynamics. In such cases, the teacher should communicate the matter with the school psychologist.
In milder cases, they should communicate with the family, and other teachers of bullies and victims, about this matter to create awareness, clear misunderstandings, and create a common gam plan.
Appreciate the human they, victims and bullies alike, are. Be a little more positive towards the duo. If they want to talk about their emotions, lend a listening ear. Create class activities which talk about family dynamics and bonding with family members.
Educate the whole class about bullying and what they can do to stop sibling bullying.
Step 3: Develop Social Skills
Inclusion and tolerance are a few mindsets that help in eradicating any type of bullying. But if a child has to fight with himself (as is the case with a bully), the emotional intelligence is more crucial than these social mindsets.
Include class activities which focus on building socio-emotional intelligence among students. A few common examples include naming emotions of others and themselves, journaling, and building emotions using positive words or actions.
Sibling bullying starts at home and its elimination can only happen at hope. That said, teachers and school environment plays an vital role in mitigating the losses and creating awareness around this topic.
If you are witnessing such bullying among your students, step up to bring normalcy within the lives of those affected.
Syeda Aruba lives in a world that is not away from yours yet full of contentment and self-satisfaction. She believes that she can, and everyone in retrospect, can produce happiness within themselves by knowing the right tools and making a commitment. She is committed to making the world a better place for all to live in. You can read her stories at her blog.
This article is continuation of 50+ parenting tips for toddlers and teenager for empowring them to be more mature, happy and successful in life. If you have not read the first 6 parts, it is highly recommended to click on the links provided below. Parenting Tips Part...
Background: Choeifat school system is one of the oldest school systems of middle east with 30+ branches in UAE, Middle East, Europe, America and Australia. According to Wikipedia SABIS is an education management organization that operates schools in fifteen countries...
Ok, India is one of the largest economies of the world. Through its current education system, India produces best brain and supplies to the whole world. Yet, India has one of the poorest literacy rates in the world and most of its population does not have acess to...
Parenting Tips Part 1 Parenting Tips Part 2 Parenting Tips Part 3 Parenting Tips Part 4 Parenting Tips Part 5 This article is continuation of 50+ parenting tips for toddlers and teenager for empowring them to be more mature, happy and successful in life. If you have...
Why Choosing The Right School Bag for Kids is Important School bag will be used by your child for the whole year. If you do not chose the right school bag, your child may have to face several problems such as: Back Pain, spine or shoulder problems - if the school bag...
Parenting Tips Part 1 || Parenting Tips Part 2 || Parenting Tips Part 3 || Parenting Tips Part-4 47. Not everyone is A grader - Don’t expect your kids to bring home the best progress report from school. Everyone is ‘differently’ genius. Some kids are best in...
Below are some of the key problems with Pakistan Education System: Extremely poor quality of teachers in government schools Existance of ghost schools (Schools that appear in papers only but do not exist!) No centralized control on school syllabus Not enough...
‘I am not a teacher, but an awakener.’ –Robert Frost ‘I never teach my pupils; I only attempt to provide the conditions in which they can learn.’ –Albert Einstein ‘When one teaches, two learn.’ –Robert Heinlein ‘I cannot teach anybody anything, I can only make them...
Parenting Tips Part 1 || Parenting Tips Part 2 || Parenting Tips Part 3 37. Tell meaningful stories - Stories are one of the best ways for teaching meaningful lessons of life. Stories stay in mind for longer duration and hence the message behind them. Read this...
Back in 90s kids never complained about being bored. Even i didn't know what 'bored' means as I used to spend most of my time with friends and having fun by doing simple stuff at home, in our street or in the play ground. Time is different now. Kids want variety in...
50 types of students – funny list
How Top Students Study – 12 Study Tips
Hello friends, I am 12 years old and I would like to tell my aweful bullying story from my first day at school. First day at school To begin...
Every parent wants to be the best one and strives to do all the right actions based on the mental apprehension of the subject. However, many of...
Problems of online classes – Schools across the world had to switch to online education due to Covid-19. Check out these critical problems that student face for attending online classes.
Parenting tips for toddlers & teenagers enabling your kids to be mature, happy and successful in life. The precise list is easy to understand and practice. Don’t miss out!