Over the past month we have spoken about the dynamics of online education and how it can be beneficial for some students, but not so beneficial for others.
We have learned that "blended" instruction can be valuable as well.
I would now like to switch gears and speak about an unwanted phenomenon that disrupts the daily lives of many students.
What I am referring to is the practice of bullying.
We can all safely say that during some point in our lives we were bullied by another student, friend or even a co-worker.
We also can agree that it was not so pleasant being on the receiving end of torment and practical jokes. Everyone enjoys a good laugh every now and then, but a little bit of humor goes a long way.
It is a reality that students of all age groups and grades are susceptible to bullying while attending school each and every day.
As parents, we strive to give our children the best school supplies, school clothes and assistance with schoolwork at the family dinner table, but does our job also entail providing our children with the tools to deal with bullying?
The question arises that how do we know if our child is being bullied at school without them letting us know.
As your child ages, chances are they will be less apt to discuss any type of situation related to these matters. We as parents must become investigators and be on the lookout for the signs and symptoms that are presented by the affected child.
This can be a daunting and drawn-out process, to say the least.
When your child starts to show signs that are out of their normal range, it is time to take a moment and intervene. This can be as simple as asking your child some basic questions about how school is going, or even questions pertaining to how life in general is going for him or her.
The absolute worst thing a parent can do is to draw conclusions without any evidence or place shame on the student for letting other students upset him or her. These interactions should be about listening and being supportive in nature.
Students often will show signs of withdrawal from their school or any related school functions.
If severe enough, the child may even show signs of avoidance of any other school-age children outside of the school setting. You may have just noticed these changes, but the truth is they may have been going on for some time.
It is important to take notice to your child's eating and sleeping patterns. The child may be so "worked-up" that they can't bear to eat or get a healthy night's sleep.
The child also may not want to engage in attending school and might even put up a fight in the mornings before school.
The older students might even skip school or leave without permission during the school day.
Grades are another sign that may be indicative of a student being bullied, as the student may have extreme challenges concentrating on his or her schoolwork; grades may be steadily declining.
Whether or not your child is showing mild or severe signs and symptoms of being bullied it is important that we head off any level of bullying that is occurring. We must remember that there are resources parents can employ to cease bullying.
In the next article, I will discuss many of these resources and provide some strategy for assisting your child with bullying in the school setting.
Cordell is the owner of Excell Tutoring Services, 1020 Arthur Road, Montoursville.
He may be reached at 506-9998 or firstname.lastname@example.org.