A Child’s Reaction to Cyber-Bullying Assembly | Families
At the close of next week, my first born will be considered a middle schooler. As a parent, the thought of it all is a bit scary. I’m nervous for her, and let’s face it—I’m nervous for me. There are some parts of growing up that are more complicated these days. My husband and I have discussed Internet safety, and we’re always working with our children on the responsibilities that are involved with being online. Nonetheless, a new means of bullying has emerged as a result of our ever-changing relationship with technology. In her elementary school today, she attended an assembly on cyber-bullying. Instead of me addressing what occurred during this session, I decided to ask her to describe what she learned and could discuss with me. The following synopsis came from my eleven year old daughter:
Cyber-Bullying is NEVER a good thing. While you may be thinking it’s just a joke, the person you’re bullying isn’t going to think it’s funny at all. So that’s why I think it’s a good thing that today, June 2nd and yesterday, June 1st, Cyber-Bullying expert Justin Patchin talked to grades 4-11 about cyber-bullying. He also provided a free presentation yesterday night for any parents or guardians interested. Justin is also an associate professor at University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire and co-director of the Cyber-Bullying Research Center.
From a child’s perspective: When Mr. Patchin talked to us today, he showed us 3 different videos and discussed cyber-bullying, how to stop it, and what not to do with us. The first video had to do with someone who was getting bullied not only online but also at school. The person was afraid to tell her parents in fear that they’d get too involved. I can agree with that feeling, but I know that it’s best to tell someone as soon as possible. That way it can be stopped before it goes too far. There also can be 4 different roles in cyber-bullying; the friend, the bully, the witness, and the victim. I saw some other student’s faces getting red when he talked about the fact that it’s not good to state online that you’re better at something than someone, because that’s another reason that cyber-bullying begins. It can also begin when someone’s very smart, if someone gets teased, and if someone’s a “teacher’s pet.” We also had to realize that cyber-bullies aren’t big mean criminals, but they’re ordinary people committing a “crime.” Overall, I learned that it’s NEVER good to Cyber-Bully someone, because you might be thinking that you’re ‘just kidding’ when you’re really giving someone a virtual slap in the face.