Yesterday, I took a break from programming and walked into the auditorium to find it filled with students and parents for freshmen orientation. This is absolutely the largest turnout I’ve seen so far since working at my school. I have my suspicions why, but regardless it’s a good sign that parents are possibly becoming more involved with their children’s education. Hopefully.
Well, when I walked into the auditorium, a student/staff created video was being shown that focused on bullying, a very prominent and relevant topic that is in the forefront of much educational news and current events. In any case, from what I saw the video showed much of bullying as being physically pushed and shoved around, surrounded by one’s enemies and foes without much of a way out except to take the pain and become hurt. Now, I don’t argue that such an aspect of bullying can and does occur, however, I would argue that it’s not the only form and more often than not takes a backseat to bullying that is of the form of verbal abuse and non-physical pain. It’s quite obvious when an individual is being pushed around and backed into a wall while be surrounded by a group of kids or even one kid, yet it’s when someone is plainly hurting another with sharp and painful words is when it is less plain to the common person. The problem lies in the fact that so many times I’d overhear or catch one of my students simply joking with another classmate, but the other is obviously not taking part in joy of the other, that is when I become serious and point out to the jokester that he or she is being a bully, that they hastily without conviction deny such a thing and say they are not being serious. In my experience, some bullies don’t realize they are being a bully because they’re either having too much fun at the expense of the other or they’re heavily blinded by jealousy or hatred. I would say that on top of awareness, what needs to be made known are the qualities, signs, and characteristics of what embodies being a bully.
In any case, I was saddened to see that the video being shown to the incoming freshmen and their parents didn’t touch upon all types of bullying. In light of this, I think I may speak about verbal abuse to all my classes during the first day of school.