What To Do If Your Child is Being Bullied

It’s extremely important that you talk to your children about bullying. Explain to your child what bullying is and tell him or her that it is never okay to be a bully. Not only can bullying make a child’s daily life very difficult, but it can also affect them down the road in life.

If your child is being bullied, there are a few things you as a parent can do about the situation, starting with telling him or her that it is not their fault. If your child approached you about the bullying go on to praise him or her and assure your child that you will help.  The following includes what action you should take if you child is being bullied:

Provide them with comfort and advice. Unfortunately, we can’t put a stop to bullying as immediately as we would like, but we can provide our children with tips for avoiding such harassment. If your child is being cyber bullied, you can walk them through the steps of privacy settings or discuss staying off the internet for a while to avoid the bully. Teach your child how to stay calm when responding to the bully, as reacting may encourage the bully more. Some experts have said to remove the bully’s incentives. For example, if your child’s lunch money is being stolen, try packing them a lunch instead. There is no shame is taking the high road. You should remind your children that if your advice does happen to fail, they are in no way at fault or responsible for being bullied.

Contact your child’s school. After talking with your child about the bullying situation, you should contact your child’s school. Though your child may be able to keep things to themselves, adult intervention is a necessary step in bringing the bullying to an end. Be sure to discuss the situation with your child’s teacher or principal, and make it clear that you want immediate efforts taken on their end. Also, make sure to familiarize yourself with your school’s bullying code and any relevant state laws. If you feel that your child may potentially be in danger, you may also want to contact local legal authorities. Before you approach anyone, make sure that you know the bully’s name and the specific instances when the bullying occurred.

You, as a parent, should listen calmly and carefully if your child does approach you about being bullied, meaning you shouldn’t overreact. Yelling or crying may intimidate your child, and possibly stop them from communicating in the future. There’s no doubt it’s an emotional experience discovering that your child is being bullied, however your child’s comfort should come first.

Take your child seriously and avoid laughing the situation off, or again, they may cut communication in the future. Your goal should be to show your child you care and understand the challenges of being bullied. Assure that you will stop the bully together as a team.

If you would like to learn more about bullying and what you can do to prevent it, contact Simple Acts of Care and Kindness at 866-459-7225. Or visit www.simpleacts.org for additional information regarding bullying.

Summer Activities for the Family | SACK of Corona, Ca

122406213School is almost out for summer, which means you’re searching for ways to avoid the dreaded “I’m bored” complaints from your kiddos. Luckily, there’s no shortage of parks, beaches, museums, and more just begging to be explored and experienced with your kids. The trick is to plan ahead. Brainstorm ideas for things to do now, so you don’t wind up spending the entire summer watching television.

We’ve put together just a few summer activities for some of our favorite kid-friendly things to do:

Road Trip: Between the car games, the new places to discover and the special time spent together, it will be an experience you will remember forever.

Fishing: Fishing can be such a relaxing pastime. Head out to your favorite lake or river and spend some quality time with your family

Sandcastle: Wherever you are in Southern California you’re beach adjacent! Sandcastles are great because they can be as modest or extravagant as you have the patience to make. Plus, they’re so much fun to smash. Get your pail shovel and head for the beach!

Stargazing: Looking up at the stars on a clear night is beautiful and fascinating, especially if you’ve got a telescope in tow. See how many constellations you can find or how many different shapes you can find out there in the universe.

The Zoo: Learn about your favorite animal at the zoo this summer. Many zoos have special activities planned for little ones, so make sure to look up what’s happening ahead of time to maximize your fun.

Gardening: Growing a garden with your kids is a great way to get them to learn to nurture something from seed to bloom. There is no better feeling than seeing your hard work pay off with beautiful flowers or a delicious vegetables.

Art: Spruce up your garden or walkway with custom painted rocks by your little artist(s).

Paddle Boating: If you’re wanting to get out on the water without having to travel, try paddle boating this summer. It’s a great way to get the kids on the water, especially if it’s for the first time, and is easy to do in a pond at a park.

Backyard Campout: Grab the marshmallows and sleeping bags and have a fun camping trip in your own backyard. This is also a great option for younger kids who might not be ready to spend a night in the woods.

Park Playgrounds: Kids love playgrounds. Not only is it a great way to use some of that bottled up energy outside, but it’s also a good way to meet new friends (for both kids and adults). Instead of hitting up the same playground all the time, try to mix it up a bit, for variety.

Theme Parks: Southern California is a hot bed of Theme Parks! There is nothing more thrilling than riding a roller coaster. Even little ones get a kick out of the kiddie-sized rides. Theme parks are a perfect way to spend a summer day, since there’s usually something for everyone, including some less-adventurous thrill seekers.

Outdoor Concert: There are so many great outdoor events happening this summer, no matter where you’re from. Try to make it to at least one this season and it’ll be an unforgettable experience for your family. Contact your local Parks & Rec for information on outdoor concerts they may be offering.

Family Bike Ride: Learning to ride a bike is a milestone in most kids’ lives and a skill that they will never truly forget. Whether your little one is still on training wheels or not, get some exercise this summer by taking a bike ride as a family to a new park, a library or even the perfect picnic location

Take advantage of your summer by spending as much quality time with your family as possible!

For more information visit our website at: http://simpleacts.org/

SACK Color-A-Thon! | SACK of Corona, Ca

The S.A.C.K. Color-A-Thon is coming up in less than two weeks! Have you registered yet?

MONEY RAISED WILL BE USED TO HELP US STOP BULLYING BY SUPPORTING THE, “WORLD KINDNESS YOUTH CONFERENCE”

What is a Color-A-Thon? Color-A-Thon is a fun event for students and adults of all ages. Students get donations from friends and families, earn rewards according to the amount of money they raise and then get to participate in a 3k race/walk that ends in a blast of color…the Color-A-Thon!

Register here:  http://shop.schoolathon.org/EventIndex.asp?EID=181005 

Here is a sneak peak video of the fun you’ll have!:  http://player.vimeo.com/video/106192201

 

For more information visit our website at: http://simpleacts.org/

 

START YOUR MORNING WITH A ROUTINE | SACK of Corona, Ca

“If you’re like the majority of us, your days are planned out even before your head’s off your pillow. Soccer practice, PTA meetings, hitting the gym – the life pie-chart tends to have some pretty small, yet crucial pieces. And, nothing can unravel a day before it even begins better than a rocky, disorganized, frantic morning.

 

GIVE YOURSELF TIME

This one seems like a no-brainer, but it’s imperative. How many times are we tempted to hit the snooze button over and over? Sleep is wonderful, but that last half hour lounging in bed next to a chirping alarm clock won’t make a huge difference. Use that time to get up, make a cup of coffee or catch the morning news before the kids are awake. You’ll be more alert and ready to tackle the day!

 

PREP THE NIGHT BEFORE

Take a moment the night before to help your kids set out clothes for the next day. Prepare food and pack lunches too – that way, it’s just a simple grab-and-go.  Breakfast  can work this way too; consider oatmeal or hard-boiled eggs. Organize backpacks and make sure everything is in there. These little things won’t take you long during the evening, but they can make a huge difference during a busy morning.

 

WRITE IT DOWN

It’s always easier to stay organized when you know what you need to do. Keep a calendar in a central location and keep it updated with appointments and deadlines. Create an age-appropriate chores/responsibilities checklist for the refrigerator to ensure everything you need gets done. And, review these with your kids in the morning. Having all the things you need to know, right in front of you, sets the table for a well-organized day.

 

SET DAILY GOALS

We asked a mom of two young children to shed some light on successful morning routines. She says she likes to talk with her kids about what they want to accomplish that day, and help them set realistic, enjoyable goals. Nothing like starting the day with a positive, constructive spirit!

 

STAY CALM

Finally, don’t sweat it if things don’t do exactly as planned. Sooner or later, your alarm clock will not go off. Your kids will change their minds about outfits set out the night before. Dogs knock over garbage cans, and folders of homework will mysteriously disappear. By having your routine locked into place, you’ll condition yourself to be calm and collected – and folks with those qualities can handle curveballs!”

Read More at…http://www.thechipshoppeblog.com/2014/10/start-your-morning-with-routine-your.html

For more information visit our website at: http://simpleacts.org/

Ideas for an Awesome Day with your Kids | SACK of Corona, Ca

 

“My big girl starts first grade in just over one week.

That delicious feeling at the start of the summer where you have nothing to do and all the time in the world to do it in?

Gone.

In its place, we have 7:00 am departures breathing down our necks. Early bedtime, which means an early dinner, which means next to zero fun free time as a family on weeknights. And…HOMEWORK.

To prolong the magic of summer, I took a day off work during our last week with Abby.

I wanted to do something special with the girls – something with maybe a few less curse words than our last hurrah to summer at the end of my maternity leave last year.

But I didn’t want to swing too far in the other direction of overscheduling us, turning me into That Mom.

“Kids, hurry up! We need to have fun NOW!”

How can you have a wonderfully happy day with your kids, instead of wasting the day in your jammies watching The LEGO Movie and belting out Everything Is Awesome…OR scheduling so much fun that you forget to enjoy yourselves?”

Read more here…http://idealistmom.com/2014/08/happy-day-with-your-kids/#_a5y_p=2273914 

 

For more information visit our website at: http://simpleacts.org/

(Source: Idealistmom.com)

Help your Child Prevent Bullying

As children head back to the classroom, now is a great time for parents and guardians to talk with your kids about bullying. Here are five tips to help your child prevent bullying and to help them deal with bullying:

1)     Establish lines of communication and talk for at least 15 minutes a day. Bullying can be difficult for parents to talk about, but it is important that children know they can talk to you, before they are involved in bullying in any way. StopBullying.gov and our partners at the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) have easy tips and tools that can help start the conversation.

2)     Make sure kids know safe ways to be more than a bystander. When kids witness bullying, it can affect them too. Helping kids learn what they can do to help when they see bullying can help to stop bullying. Click here for more suggestions on how bystanders can help.

3)     Know your state’s anti-bullying law and your school’s anti-bullying policy. Forty-nine states have laws requiring schools to have anti-bullying policies. Know what your school policy says and how to report an incident of bullying if you ever need to.

4)     Learn how to support kids involved in bullying. When you find out your child is involved in bullying, it is important to know how to respond. Whether your child is bullying others or is the one being bullied it is important to know what steps to take, and which to avoid, in order to resolve the situation.

5)     Take an active role in anti-bullying initiatives. The key to addressing bullying is to stop it before it starts. Work with your children, their school, and the community to raise awareness and take action against bullying. Toolkits like the Health Resources and Services Administration’s Community Action Training Modules can help you start an initiative in your community. You can get your children involved, too, by using the Youth Leaders Toolkit to help them mentor younger children.

Visit StopBullying.gov for more helpful tips on how to prevent bullying, and have a great school year!

 

Bullying Facts and Solutions | Corona, CA

Despite all of the media attention that has been given to the mostly tragic consequences of bullying, you simply need to scan the comments sections in on-line articles regarding bullying to sadly see what percentage of adults stay in the dark while not really understanding the negative impact that bullying has on such a large amount of kids on a daily basis.

Below are some of the facts and statistics that we’ve found that make the most important impact on how adults and parents begin to understand bullying as an issue, not just in their community, but also throughout the entire country as well.

Bullying Facts and Statistics

  • 160,000 children within the United States stay home each day due to bullying situations.
  • Eighty-three percent of bullying incidents receive no intervention and continue to happen.
  • Those who bully are four times as likely to participate in criminal behavior in adulthood and frequently develop self-destructive thoughts
  • There are four types of bullying: physical, verbal, cyber,  and social. Male bullying a lot of the time consists of verbal and physical abuse, whereas female bullying a lot of the time involves verbal abuse, cyber, and social bullying by spreading of rumors.
  • Only half of educators have received coaching on the way to handle bullying incidents.  Not teaching educators a way to handle bullying is like not training doctors to treat the flu!
  • Children are additional more likely to receive verbal assaults targeting their appearances and behaviors instead of race or spiritual beliefs.  In several cases, bullies felt that the victim was responsible for these behaviors or appearances.
  • A study by the National School Board Administration reported that 33.1% of the Middle and High School students that participated in the study agreed or strongly agreed that teachers and adults can stop bullying.  This implies that 2/3 of those students don’t seem to be assured that they will get the help they need in bullying situations from their teachers or other adults in power.
  • In 2005, approximately 1 out of 10 internet users aged 10-17 had been the victim of cyber bullying and “on-line harassment”.  Half of victims that were bullied off-line and on-line by one single individual reported being extremely troubled by the incidents.

“If there are no heroes to save you, Then you be the hero”
― Quoted from a Japanese Comic book

Contact Simple Acts of Care and Kindness today at 866-459-7225 or visit our website for more information.

Contact Simple Acts of Care and Kindness proudly serves Norco, Riverside, Lake Elsinore, San Bernardino, Eastvale and surrounding areas.

Mean Girl Bullying…. What adults can do! | Corona, CA

Do schools and teachers pick up on this happening?

Often parents and teachers dismiss the mean girl behavior as part of being a girl.  They often say, “It’s what girls do,” or “Girls will be girls.” Often with younger elementary school girls, parents are not as tuned in to the situation to watch out for this type of behavior because it just seems that the girls are too young for it to be happening to them. But if you talk to teachers, they will tell you they see it on a daily basis.

Many Anti-bullying programs focus only on managing physical aggression, so the issue of mean girls fall outside the scope of the majority of programs. Boys often tend to be more physical, so when there is a fight on the playground with one child being aggressive towards another, there is cause for concern. The school does not want a child physically injured.

Most Anti-bullying programs don’t look at friendship issues, but for girls, that’s where the aggression usually happens.

What can you do when the bully is the girl’s best friend?

If safety is issue and your child is in danger or endangering someone else, get professional help.

Preparing girls for what they might face with a new classroom full of girls is a great idea. Every year there are different  in the classroom. Here are some tips that can help:

  • Start by building strong connections at home. You want to be understanding and a good listener. But that doesn’t mean asking questions that can be leading or suggest that she has been wronged.
  • Validate the range of emotions she is experiencing are valid. Help your daughter understand that all emotions, both positive and negative, are normal.  Remind her that bad emotions don’t make her a bad girl. Try telling her things like, “I understand  how angry you are about what happened. It hurts our feelings when friends are mean.” By allowing your her anger or irritation to play out will help her calm down quicker than if you just play down the situation.
  • Avoid problem-solving for her. You want your daughter to learn how to handle herself in these situations and in life. Be there for her and don’t just tell her what to do. Helping her work through what is going on by asking her questions like, “I understand that your friends are telling everyone that you’re poor and you shop at the thrift store. Why do you think she is she doing that?” Help her understand what is going on in the situation.
  • Try role play to work through the problem. Help by practicing with your daughter her responses to bullying but asking questions like, “Why are you worried about my clothes? If you really are my friend, then why would you be so worried about this?” Help your daughter hold her ground with her own strong but not aggressive statements. Or, if your family has had enough of the situation, a better idea is to start developing new friendships and avoid that “friend.”
  • Work with teachers and school staff. At this young age, girls look up to their teachers and other adults at the school. If they see an exclusion situation happening, sometimes these adults can offer your daughter an opportunity to join him or her for lunch or a special activity to increase her “social value.”

Contact Simple Acts of Care and Kindness today at 866-459-7225 or visit our website for more information.

Contact Simple Acts of Care and Kindness proudly serves Norco, Riverside, Lake Elsinore, San Bernardino, Eastvale and surrounding areas.

The “Mean Girl” bully… No longer just in Middle School | Corona, CA

Kids are starting to heading back to school and one important situation to cover is “mean girlbullying. Typically we think of it as a middle-school issue, but it’s now happening at younger ages. Below we will talk about the problem of young mean girls and how parents can prepare their daughters for more difficult social situations they may face before the school year begins.

What does young mean girl bullying really look like in the first- or second-grade?

Typically it can be cruel words, the spreading of rumors, and systematic teasing. Some parents have said it even started in kindergarten. A study done at SUNY Buffalo in New York concluded that some girls understand these tactics as young as preschool.

Official the term for this is called “relational aggression.” As girls get older and move into third grade, they get more sophisticated and cliques really begin to form. Additionally during this time, you see actions with intent to hurt. Although in kindergarten through second-grade girls, these actions may not be intend to hurt; the girls involved are trying establish their place on the social ladder and often don’t realize that what they are doing is  actually causing pain to others.

One of the most difficult things about this for the younger girls involved is that it can be their best friend who is also their bully. These back and forth friendships can be destructive for the girl who doesn’t know from one day to the next if her friend will play with her, or round up other girls and start a club where she is the only girl that is not allowed to join. Research has shown that the collection of the mean-girl experiences over time can significantly impact a girl’s ability to learn.

See next weeks article on what adults can do to help.

Contact Simple Acts of Care and Kindness today at 866-459-7225 or visit our website for more information.

Contact Simple Acts of Care and Kindness proudly serves Norco, Riverside, Lake Elsinore, San Bernardino, Eastvale and surrounding areas.

Discriminatory harassment and bullying: a definitional sticky wicket? | Corona, CA

Bullying in the news

Part of the confusion arises from the word’s increased popularity and the public’s tendency (fueled by the media) to apply it too broadly. This is what Emily Bazelon, senior Slate legal editor and author of Sticks and Stones, argued in a New York Times op-ed in March: “(The word) is being overused — expanding, accordion-like to encompass both appalling violence or harassment and a few mean words.   The misdiagnosis of bullying is making the real but limited problem seem impossible to solve. If every act of aggression counts as bullying, how can we stop it?”

In a later column in Pyschology Today (March 31), Bazelon drew a distinction between the overused definition of “bullying,” on the one hand, and the consistently clear definition of “discriminatory harassment” under federal discrimination laws. She urged care in “distinguishing discriminatory harassment from other kinds of bullying. In the case of discriminatory harassment (based on race, disability, sex, etc.), the law is clear and so are the definitions. The federal Department of Education wrote a letter to schools reminding them of their obligations in 2010, and it sets out clear guidelines for shielding students from bullying that’s based on what’s really discrimination.”

So, according to Bazelon, the definition of bullying has been abused, but the definition of discriminatory harassment is clear and always has been. This requires some deconstruction.

The standard definition of “bullying” among educators and psychologists comes not from the law but from a Swedish psychologist, Dan Olweus, according to Bazelon. While researching aggression among youth during the 1960s, Olweus identified a whole range of cruel behaviors but found a particularly wounding form of aggression he labeled “bullying.” This behavior had three basic elements: verbal or physical aggression; repetition over time; and a power differential.

“A onetime episode of meanness or violence could be bad in the moment, but it was the repetition and the power imbalance that were most often associated with lasting, scarring impact. Bullying, as Olweus defined it, was the behavior that constituted real abuse in the eyes of the children themselves: a serious rupture in their lives with potentially devastating consequences,” Bazelon wrote.

California law does not contain a definition of prohibited “bullying” conduct, except to the extent that it outlines school findings necessary for the most severe disciplinary consequences, as stated in Education Code section 48900(r). In order to suspend or recommend expulsion, a school must find “bullying” that fits these requirements:

“Severe or pervasive physical or verbal acts or conduct, including communications made in writing or by means of an electronic act … directed toward one or more pupils that has or can be reasonably predicted to have the effect of one or more of the following:

(A) Placing a reasonable pupil or pupils in fear of harm to that pupil’s or those pupils’ person or property.
(B) Causing a reasonable pupil to experience a substantially detrimental effect on his or her physical or mental health.
(C) Causing a reasonable pupil to experience substantial interference with his or her academic performance.
(D) Causing a reasonable pupil to experience substantial interference with his or her ability to participate in or benefit from the services, activities or privileges provided by a school.”

Federal law does not directly address bullying. However, both California and federal law prohibit “harassment” of students based on legally protected attributes (race, sex, disability, etc.). “Harassment” is defined as conduct that creates a “hostile environment” that limits students from participating or benefiting from school activities or services and can include conduct that might also be considered “bullying” under the Olweus or other definitions.

California Education Code section 48900.4 provides that the school may suspend or recommend for expulsion students in grades 4 to 12 when the school has determined that “the pupil has intentionally engaged in harassment, threats or intimidation, directed against school district personnel or pupils, that is sufficiently severe or pervasive to have the actual and reasonably expected effect of materially disrupting classwork, creating substantial disorder, and invading the rights of either school personnel or pupils by creating an intimidating or hostile educational environment.”

While “harassment” conduct may overlap with what is known as “bullying,” it is not the same as bullying. The concept of bullying is based on a psychological construct designed to identify the most emotionally harmful behavior; by contrast, harassment is a legal construct designed to protect certain students from discrimination. Harassment, which may include bullying, may also include conduct outside the standard definition of bullying; for example, harassment under federal law does not need to be directed at a specific target, is not necessarily motivated by intent to harm and is not always repeated.

The preceding is a recent story posted on the website Palo Alto Online dated June 14,  2013.  Use this link to read the story in its entirety.

For more information about how you can help call us at 866-459-7225 or visit our website at http://simpleacts.org

S.A.C.K. also proudly serves Norco, Corona, Lake Elsinore, San Bernardino, Eastvale, and surrounding areas.