In preparation for Anti-Bullying Day on May 4, I shared the story of Goliath with the children in assembly this morning. Some very keen children enthusiastically volunteered to help dramatise the story and a very brave Miss Reed took on the part of Goliath. There was much cheering for David and the Israelites and some true panto ‘booing’ for Goliath. Goliath’s defeat was an Oscar-worthy performance but all agreed the ‘best man won!’ The children were also quick to comment on David’s bravery and likened it to St. George who we thought about in last week’s assembly.
I asked the children what we would call someone who acted like Goliath did today and was quickly given the answer ‘a bully’. I was pleased the child who gave this answer also qualified it by saying, “because Goliath teased the people every day and not just once.” I told the children that Friday is Anti-Bullying Day when lots of people in lots of countries make an extra effort to help children learn how to deal with bullies.
In Pre-Prep we teach the children to firstly tell the person who has hurt them, either physically or verbally, to ‘stop’ in a loud, firm voice and if the behaviour doesn’t stop they should then tell someone who can help them.
We also thought about the old saying, ‘sticks and stones may break my bones but words can never hurt me’ and decided it was not really true. We even suggested ‘words’ can hurt more than ‘sticks’ because we can’t put a plaster on our feelings. I showed the children two visual examples of what happens to our feelings when they get hurt. Firstly we looked an apple that looked lovely and shiny on the outside but was all bruised on the inside because it had been ‘dropped’ lots of times. Secondly we looked at a fresh piece of paper, crumpled it up and then smoothed it out again. The children noticed there were still ‘crumple’ marks and we said this was like our feelings inside and that it can take a long time and a lot of hard work to make the ‘crumple’ marks disappear.
Finally we sang a song we have learned all about bullying and what to do if it happens to them:
“Let’s say no and walk away
Tell a friend ‘cos that’s ok
Let’s say no and walk away
We’ll be stronger every day”
We decided every day should be Anti-Bullying Day and have promised to work hard to only use kind words towards our friends so as not to cause ‘bruises’ or ‘crumples’ that can take a long time to heal.