Bullying Tips for Students

Are you afraid of the school bully?  

© Allan L. Beane, Ph.D.
www.bullyfree.com
abeane@bullyfree.com

Note: Use the following information only with the recommendation of your teacher or counselor and your parents. These strategies should also be used with other strategies to keep you safe.

General Strategies:

  • Look confident (assertive body language) by standing tall and holding your head up.
  • Don't appear hurt or angry. Keep your facial expressions neutral but serious.
  • Don't run away, unless you are in danger. Move closer, turn sideways and have non-threatening eye contact.
  • Maintain good balance by keeping your feet shoulder width apart.
  • Hold your arms beside your body. Don't hold your arms up like you want to fight.
  • Using a strong but calm voice make your assertive comment and then walk off confidently. If you can't walk off, then start a conversation with someone else.

Specific Strategies:

  • Make an assertive statement: Say "Stop it!" with a serious face and serious but calm voice. Or say "This is a waste of my time. I'm out of here." (Walk off confidently. If you can't, start a conversation with someone.)
  • Fogging-(admit the characteristic) soft verbal comebacks. For example, "Allan, you sure are fat." You could say, "You're right, I need to lose weight." (Walk off confidently. If you can't, start a conversation with someone.)
  • Admit the Obvious – point out that the bully sees the obvious – "Wow! He noticed I have big ears." (Walk off confidently. If you can't, start a conversation with someone.)
  • Broken record – repeat "What did you say?" or "That's your opinion." or "So." (Walk off confidently. If you can't, start a conversation with someone.)
  • Confront bully concerning his/her spreading lies/rumors. (Walk off confidently. If you can't, start a conversation with someone.)
  • Expose the ignorance of the student who bullies you. For example, if he is bullying you because of your medical problem or disability, tell him the facts about it. (Walk off confidently. If you can't, start a conversation with someone.)
  • Give permission to tease “Well, it's okay to say what you want. It doesn't bother me." (Walk off confidently. If you can't, start a conversation with someone.)
  • Use sense of humor (do not make the bully feel like he/she is being laughed at). For example, if the bully says, "You sure do have big ears." You could say, "I know; sometimes I feel like I am an elephant." (Walk off confidently. If you can't, start a conversation with someone.)
  • Make an asset of characteristic. For example, one boy was teased because he lost his hair due to cancer treatments. He said, "Well, I guess Michael Jordan and I are alike, we both don't have much hair." (Walk off confidently. If you can't, start a conversation with someone.)
  • Throw something and run when you are at risk of being hurt or you are in danger.
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