Summary: Groups of participants identify ways that bystanders can help reduce bullying and perform these for other groups.
Target Grades: 6th grade and above
Minimum time needed: Approx 25 minutes
Materials: Art supplies (optional)
Connection to bullying: Kids are often told that bystanders should help reduce bullying, but it is often hard to know the best thing to do. Intervening in an active bullying event can turn the attention to you. There are a lot of things that bystanders can do, and this exercise helps us identify and express some of those in creative ways.
Instructions: With the entire group, or smaller groups of six, work together to identify a list of ways that bystanders can help reduce bullying. Examples include:
- Say something supportive to a victim
- Tell a teacher or adult about what is happening
- Delete and do not forward text message or other social media that could be hurtful
- If you know a bully and feel comfortable talking to them, ask why they act like a bully and encourage them not to.
Once you have your list, break into groups of 2. The groups make a creative message to encourage positive bullying bystander action – through a poem, song/rap, dance, or scene from a play. Students perform their creative messages to the group.
Discussion: After the performances, students comment on the creative messages Ask questions such as:
- What types of creative delivery were used, and what did you like about each of them?
- Would you be comfortable doing these bystander actions? Why, or why not?
- Can bullying be prevented? Why, or why not?