Thursday, May 15, 2008

"Back off!"

Kids have little sensors that tell them who they should or should not bully. Like lions searching for prey, they target the weak. Jake sometimes gets picked on at school. He usually doesn’t tell anyone when he’s being picked on but if it gets bad he will. I don’t want him to get bullied but he needs to have some tools for dealing with it on his own. A lot of the things teachers tell children to say in those situations can be translated into “Please hurt me.” One thing he was taught to say was so bad that Brianne, yes Brianne laughed at him! A couple of weeks ago he talked to me about stuff at school and I told him to say, “Back off!” if anyone messes with him. I felt that it wasn’t a whiny “Leave me alone.” or “stop it.” Neither was it something that would escalate the situation. It was a power statement with just a hint of a threat (because that’s who I am). We talked about the tone it should be said in – strong, firm, low. I said that it may not always work but . . .

Anyway, he came home from school a couple of days ago and told me it worked. A kid had been tripping him. He told him to back off and he stopped. I’m brilliant (and self-congratulatory)!

Sad thing about that advice -- I’d completely forgotten having that conversation. Steel trap mind—that’s for sure!


Anonymous said...

I'll have to remember to teach my kids this. Wow! You are brilliant! Please keep the tips coming!

Life as the mother of 4 said...

The next step is to teach them fighting skills so they can back it up!

Anonymous said...

His teachers book said to...

1. ask: "Are you teasing me?"

2. Shove your hand in their face and say "STOP"

3. Ignore them and say "na na na!"

4. run away and tell a teacher

I could tell the teacher was uncomfortable with the steps. He was just following the book!


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