Dealing with Bullying in School: Rumors

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When kids bring a rumor to a child, they want to see the child defend against the rumor. If a child, who is the subject of the rumor, defends himself, then they have automatically lost because it is the weaker position. Therefore dealing with bullying in school involves not giving the ‘tormentors’ what they want.

Instead of taking a defensive stance against stupid rumors, a child can turn it around and have the insulter defend themselves by asking them “Do you believe it?” The person spreading the rumor now has to decide whether they want to admit believing such a stupid rumor. If they want to believe a stupid rumor, it makes them look stupid. The victim automatically wins when asking this question.

If the rumor spreader says, “No,” the child can say “Good.” If the rumor spreader says, “Yes,” the child can respond with, “You can believe it if you wish.” Either way the child wins!

The first thing to know while dealing with bullying in school is that it is only fun to spread rumors about someone if they get upset. If a person allows others to spread rumors about them, it’s no fun for the rumor spreaders and they soon stop.

How do you tackle a situation of rumors in your classroom? Was it effective? Share your experiences.

From Professional Learning Board’s online continuing education course for teachers: Bullying: The Golden Rule Solution

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