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Case study: bullying

Teaching and bullying
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You’re going to watch teachers talking about what they’d do if they noticed a learner being bullied. Before you watch, familiarise yourself with the bullying situation outlined below.
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You know, sometimes, as a teacher who has been there for 20 years, you get to understand that learners who do this bullying they always have lack of confidence in themselves. So this is their own way of showing how they can actually be on top, by bullying others. So we don’t have to actually be aggressive or show violence towards them. Instead we need to show love and have creative ways of showing them how actually to live in harmony with others. So what you can actually do in the classroom, as teachers, we can actually present them with situations, like movies or even bring some readings or passages on bullying. And then we get the whole class to discuss about all these things.
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And in so doing, you are actually getting into their consciousness, offer them to understand why this is wrong, why people do things like this, and how can people of the same classroom because as a classroom you are a community. So how can you live in harmony together? I think that is the only way I can actually do it. By presenting them with that situation and then see if they can actually change their roles. What could happen? How would they feel? And how it affects the both of them, the person who’s been bullied? You know, because we all want to come to school and be in a comfortable environment.
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And we don’t want now to be actually like have our feelings trampled on by somebody else. So we have just to deal with the bully and also involve everyone so that they don’t feel like the limelight is on them, you see. Because once you actually also bring the limelight on them, they’ll feel like this is a good thing. But show them in a loving way why it is wrong and how you can actually not do it.
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I think something that I’d like to do is speak to the student who’s being bullied and make this very clear that I’m there to listen to any problem he or she might have. And I’m ready to help them. I think speaking to the student is very important, not only to the student who is being bullied but also to the students who are being accused of bullying. So I think interaction is quite important.
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It’s about two years ago, I remember about two years ago, one of my students once said that she is very upset. She cannot cope up because she has a kind of problem with others, how others are commenting, affecting her. So she doesn’t feel good. Then I talked to her especially, and in my next session, I tried to raise a kind of awareness among the common students, so that they support each other. And that worked a lot. Actually, that worked a lot because if I talked to two or three students now, it will not bring changes in the whole class. So to motivate the whole class, we have to use some strategies like that.
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What about you? Would you do something similar or different? If you teach adults, consider what you’d do if you noticed bullying in your lessons.

Watch teachers talking about what they would do if they discovered a learner was being bullied.

This is the situation:

You notice one of your learners, who used to participate in class, has become very withdrawn and they don’t seem to interact with the other learners. You notice this learner sitting alone during break times instead of spending time with others and you also saw an incident during break time where two other learners were harassing him. He was very upset. After some investigation, you discover that he is being bullied.

  • Which teacher do you agree with the most?
  • What would you do in this situation?
  • Bullying can occur in adult classes too. What would you do if you noticed it?
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