How Teachers Can Help with Cyber Bullying
The new school year has begun and you’ve just kick-started your London teaching job. Throughout the year, you’re likely to face a wide range of problems. One of the biggest issues that you’ll have to overcome is cyber bullying. Though the internet can produce some wonderfully magnificent resources, consequences can be calamitous if children are left unsupervised on the web.
When cyber bullying is brought into the classroom, that’s when teachers need to step in. But exactly how can teachers help with cyber bullying? From learning how to manage disruptive students to coping with bullies, it’s essential you deal with the problem in an effective way.
What is cyber bullying?
The first thing you need to understand is what cyber bullying is. Though it can take many forms, the effects of cyber bullying can be potentially devastating. From harsh and hurtful texts to derogatory social media posts, cyber bullying consists of sending threatening, intimidating or mean messages. Cyber bullying consists of online harassment, such as:
· Nasty text messages
· Offensive emails
· Spreading rumours
· Sharing embarrassing pictures/images without consent
· Setting up websites to attack an individual
When electronic devices are in the wrong hands, bullies are able to target particular individuals. Regardless of how the cyber bullying takes place, it’s a serious problem and something that needs to be tackled head on – especially with the advances that are being made in modern technology.
How to Recognise Cyber Bullying
Cyber bullying is a persistent issue in schools. Sometimes the line between a practical joke among friends and bullying is very fine. But how do you know when cyber bullying is taking place? As a teacher, part of your job is to recognise when one of your students is being bullied.
In this day and age, it’s likely that most of the pupils you teach will have daily access to a mobile phone, tablet or laptop. This can lead them to be at risk of cyber bullying. There’s a couple of things to look out for when it comes to cyber bullying, including:
· A change in attitude
· Being upset or quiet
· Emotional withdrawal
· Avoiding certain classes/areas of the school
· Becoming protective over a device
Though this list is not exhaustive, it just outlines a few things that could highlight someone being cyber bullied.
What to do if Someone is Being Cyber Bullied
If you suspect that one of your students is being cyber bullied, you need to take action. What you need to do is speak to the child in a calm and non-judgemental way, as you’re going to want to try and get an understanding of how long the cyber bullying has been going on for and the extent of it.
Don’t try and force the child to speak to you. Simply let them know that you’re there for them, that they’re talking in a safe space and that nothing is their fault. With a little reassurance, the victim will hopefully start to open up to you.
By being patient, you can assess the problem in full before jumping to conclusions. Try and get them to share what’s been said or the names of the bullies that are attacking them.
Once you have gained a full understanding of the cyber bullying, develop a plan and take immediate action. Dealing with bullies straight away will let others know that this is a serious issue and not something to be taken lightly. Go to the head or other authoritative senior figures and involve parents throughout the process.
How to Prevent Cyber Bullying from Happening
You need to make it clear that cyber bullying is unacceptable. Here are just a few ways in which you can prevent cyber bullying from taking place in the classroom.
1. Discuss cyber bullying: Talk to students about what it is, why it’s wrong and what will happen when cyber bullies are caught.
2. Set rules: For example, don’t allow students to have their phones switched on while in the classroom.
3. Plan group activities: By setting group work, you should create a more harmonious feel as students bond over class projects.
4. Monitor online activity: Look to adding restrictions on class computers.
If you believe that you can help combat the issue of cyber bullying through the classroom, search for a new teaching job in London or spread your wings with an international teaching job from REESON Education.