Bullying Prevention Resources

Resource Roundup

Bullying Prevention Resources

By: Dr. Anita Meinbach  |

The subject of “bullying” is often in the headlines—but few realize the extent and degree to which bullying behavior in our schools impacts the lives of children—and their families. The statistics are jarring.  How do we help children recognize and deal with bullying behavior?  How do we help recognize the strength and beauty that lies within each?  How do we change the culture of our classrooms and schools?

The resources included are geared to help insure that no child is laughed at –NOT IN OUR SCHOOLS…NOT IN OUR TOWN.   October is “Anti-Bullying month,” and the books, videos, articles and powerpoint included support the effort of students, teachers, parents, and school administrators, as they create that safe space that instills a sense of self –worth in each child, a place where each is valued and belongs, a place where children can come to learn and not be afraid.

As you involve your students in conversations regarding this topic, consider approaching it through the lens of Jewish values that closely align with how and why we must work to stop bullying: Act with Loving Kindness, Honor Humanity, Build Community, Be Inclusive, and Friendship

Eve Shalin- The 'In' Group (8 +):
From Facing History and Ourselves, In a conversation with Eli Wiesel, Eve Shalen reflects on an experience she had in eighth grade, when her need to belong affected the way she treated one of her classmates. An honest and insightful look at the many sides of the bully and the bullied.

Not In Our Town (12+):
An excerpt of the critically acclaimed PBS special that sparked a national movement against hate and intolerance tells the uplifting story of how the residents of Billings, Montana, joined together when their neighbors were threatened by white supremacists. Townspeople of all races and religions swiftly moved into action. Religious and community leaders, labor union volunteers, law enforcement, the local newspapers and concerned individuals stood united and spoke loudly for a hate-free community, proclaiming in no uncertain terms "Not In Ou
r Town!"


StopBullying.Gov Kid Videos:
Don’t miss these short situational videos that reflect various types of bullying behavior as it affects the lives of cartoon characters to whom youngsters can relate. Follow-up questions are offered to further the conversation.

Children’s Literature: 

Ages: 4-8 

I Walk with Vanessa by Kerascoet

“This simple yet powerful wordless picture book tells the story of one girl who inspires a community to stand up to bullying. The book explores the feelings of helplessness and anger that arise in the wake of seeing a classmate treated badly and shows how a single act of kindness can lead to an entire community joining in to help.”  (ADL) 

Visit the ADL Website with guide and activities to accompany this book.


Don’t Laugh at Me
by Steven Seskin and Alan Shanblin

This picture-book is an adaptation of “a heartfelt tune that inspired, and has become the anthem for, a rapidly expanding educational program within an organization called Operation Respect (founded by Yarrow, of Peter, Paul & Mary). The text/lyrics focus on the ridicule suffered by a boy with glasses, a girl who wears braces and a wheelchair-bound child, among others, ultimately uniting the voices of the bullied in the verse ‘Don't laugh at me./ Don't call me names./ Don't get your pleasure from my pain./ In God's eyes we're all the same’" Publisher’s Weekly.
Video of book accompanied by the music Peter Yarrow (of Peter, Paul and Mary)

Enemy Pie
by Derek Munson

It was going to be a great summer! At least that’s what he thought until Jeremy Ross moved into the neighborhood and became Enemy # 1. Since he never had an enemy before, he turned to his father for help. His father had the perfect remedy: “enemy pie,” an old secret recipe that helps eliminate enemies. Jeremy ultimately discovers that the true recipe for getting rid of an enemy is to turn him into a friend!

Interdisciplinary Lesson Plan

Video of book reading by Camryn Monheim

 The Juice Box Bully
by Bob Sornson and Maria Dismondy

Have you ever seen a bully in action and done nothing about it? The kids at Pete's new school get involved, instead of being bystanders. When Pete begins to behave badly, his classmates teach him about "The Promise," Will Pete decide to shed his bullying habits and make "The Promise"? Amazon

Interdisciplinary “Reader’s Guide” created by author Maria Dismond  

The Recess Queen
 by Alexis O’Neill

A schoolyard bully can’t push the new kid in class!  In this lively story, told in rhythm and rhyme, “Mean Jean was Recess Queen/ and nobody said any different…,” children learn about the power of kindness and friendship. Parents and teachers will appreciate the story's handling of conflict resolution (which happens without adult intervention).  

Video -read -aloud of story

 by Kathryn Otoshi

RED likes to pick on BLUE. YELLOW, ORANGE, GREEN, and PURPLE don’t know what to do, but they know that RED isn’t being nice. ONE joins them when things get out of hand, and by example, shows the colors how to stand up for each other and for themselves.
Interdisciplinary Lesson Plan
Video of Kathryn Otoshi as she reads One, accompanied by students’ dramatic interpretations.

 Ages 8-12 +

Hello, Universe by Erin Entrada Kelly 

“Newbery Medalist Erin Entrada Kelly’s Hello, Universe is a funny and poignant neighborhood story about unexpected friendships. Told from four intertwining points of view—two boys and two girls—the novel celebrates bravery, being different, and finding your inner bayani (hero). “Readers will be instantly engrossed in this relatable neighborhood adventure and its eclectic cast of misfits.”—Booklist

Teacher’s Guide with engaging activities and thought-provoking questions.

by R.J. Palacio

A remarkable book perfectly reflects the famous quote from The Little Prince, “It is only with one’s heart that one can see clearly. What is essential is invisible to the eye.”    “August Pullman is a 10-year-old boy who likes Star Wars and Xbox, ordinary except for his jarring facial anomalies. Homeschooled all his life, August heads to public school for fifth grade and he is not the only one changed by the experience--something we learn about first-hand through the narratives of those who orbit his world….”
Movie Trailor of the story Wonder.    As a way to introduce the book, play the trailer for students and involve them in a discussion of the quote, “You can’t blend in when you were born to stand out.” 

Involve students in an exploration of the themes and essential understandings that make this book one that readers will always remember using.  Penguin Schools Guide.

Listen to one or more of the songs included in the movie Wonder.  As students listen to the lyrics, how do they connect to their understanding of the story and to their own lives?

 Tales from the Bully Box
by Cat Woods

“Bullying stinks but knowing what to do about it can make things better. In Tales from the Bully Box, [readers] find short stories about kids…They get bullied, and sometimes they even bully. But most of the time, they are bystanders who have to figure out what to do when they witness the bullying all around them.” 

Create your own classroom “Bully Box.”  

by Jerry Spinelli

“Just like other kids, Zinkoff rides his bike, hopes for snow days, and wants to be like his dad when he grows up. But Zinkoff also raises his hand with all the wrong answers, trips over his own feet, and falls down with laughter over a word like ‘Jabip.’ Other kids have their own word to describe him, but Zinkoff is too busy to hear it. He doesn't know he's not like everyone else. And one winter night, Zinkoff's differences show that any name can someday become ‘hero.’" 

Loser Discussion Guidefilled with higher-lever thought questions that are perfect for Literature Circles, class discussion, and writing.
American Graduate Video Clip Author Jerry Spinelli discusses his journey from cowboy to award-winning author

 The No More Bullying Book for Kids by Vanessa Green Allen

A remarkable book which puts the power back in kids’ hands with tools that will give them confidence in the face of bullying and help them embrace who they are.
Bullying Awareness Guidebook: An excellent synthesis of the various aspects of bullying which "brings awareness to numerous types of bullying and who may be targeted, while also providing guidance to students, parents, educators and school professionals on how to prevent and stop this debilitating public aggression. Special attention is given to cyberbullying, an ever-growing issue for today’s generation."

Which of the tools do students believe to be most effective?  Determine ways they can share these tools with others in the school. 

Real Friends
by Shannon Hale:

Graphic memoir about how hard it is to find your real friends―and why it's worth the journey. The plot is one with which so many preteens and teens can identify. “Shannon and Adrienne have been best friends ever since they were little. But one day, Adrienne starts hanging out with Jen, the most popular girl in class and the leader of a circle of friends called The Group. Everyone in The Group wants to be Jen's #1, and some girls would do anything to stay on top . . . even if it means bullying others.”

Encourage students to use this book to connect with real-life situations in their own schools and communities.   What advice would they offer different characters in the book?

Books for Ages 12-15 +

The Revealers by Doug Wilhelm

“Parkland Middle School is a place the students call Darkland, because no one in it does much to stop the daily harassment of kids by other kids. Three bullied seventh graders use their smarts to get the better of their tormentors by starting an unofficial e-mail forum at school in which they publicize their experiences. Unexpectedly, lots of other kids come forward to confess their similar troubles, and it becomes clear that the problem at their school is bigger than anyone knew…” 

Involve students in a problem-solving activity—have them brainstorm and research to determine practical ways to create a classroom or school-wide program to address bullying—and then “just do it!”

Dear Bully:  Seventy Authors Tell Their Stories
by Dawn Metcalf

“Today's top authors for teens and young people come together to share their stories about bullying—as bystanders, as victims, and as the bullies themselves—in this moving and deeply personal collection.  Lauren Oliver, R. L. Stine, Ellen Hopkins, Carolyn Mackler,” Kiersten White, Mo Willems, Jon Scieszka, Lauren Kate, and many more contributed 70 heartfelt and empathetic stories from each corner of the schoolyard.  In addition, Dear Bully includes resources for teens, educators, and parents, and suggestions for further reading. For those working to support social and emotional learning and anti-bullying programs, Dear Bully can help foster reflection and empathy.”

Several authors who shared their stories are featured in this short article  Inspire your students to share their own stories to create your own class, Dear Bully” edition.

 The Skin I’m In
by Sharon Flake:
“Maleeka suffers every day from the taunts of the other kids in her class. If they're not getting at her about her homemade clothes or her good grades, it's about her dark, black skin. When a new teacher, whose face is blotched with a startling white patch, starts at their school, Maleeka can see there is bound to be trouble for her too. But the new teacher's attitude surprises Maleeka. Miss Saunders loves the skin she's in. Can Maleeka learn to do the same?”  (Author’s overview) Winner of the Coretta Scott King John Steptoe Award for new authors.

Sharon Flake introduces herself to readers in this video, sharing some of her loves, hopes, and vision.  She encourages readers to reach out to her to share their stories and to ask their questions.

by Jerry Spinelli:

“From the day she arrives at quiet Mica High in a burst of color and sound, the hallways hum with the murmur of “Stargirl, Stargirl…. The students of Mica High are enchanted. At first. Then they turn on her. Stargirl is suddenly shunned for everything that makes her different….” 

Perfect for discussing and journal writing to help students reflect and make connections:  How would students react to those not quite like themselves?  Have them describes situations they have experienced or witnessed. If someone like Stargirl were in their classroom.  How might they treat her? 

Random House Kids: Classroom Cast In this video, Jerry Spinelli and his wife, Eileen, discuss the inspiration for the book Stargirl as well as the challenges and successes of the writing craft.

by Ellen Wittlinger:

The groundbreaking novel from critically acclaimed author Ellen Wittlinger tells the story of a transgender teen’s search for identity and acceptance.  Be sure to get the newest edition as the book has been has been updated to include current terminology and an updated list of resources. 

Resources and information for teachers and parents regarding gender identity.

 Websites with Additional Resources:

ADL (Anti-Defamation League): Resources, activities, webinars, and more to address bullying behavior and other acts of discrimination.

Facing History and Ourselves:  Using strong pedagogy and exceptional educators’ videos and online resources, FHO’s mission is to “engage students of diverse backgrounds in an examination of racism, prejudice, and antisemitism in order to promote the development of a more humane and informed citizenry.”

The Melissa Institute:  Dedicated to eradicating violence, the Melissa Institute offers workshops and other materials to educate all stakeholders. 

Pacer National Bullying Prevention Center: Pacer’s National Bullying Prevention Center “unites, engages and educates communities nationwide to address bullying through creative, relevant and interactive resources.”

Stomp Out Bullying:  Every October, schools and organizations across the country join STOMP Out Bullying™ in observing National Bullying Prevention Month. “The goal: encourage communities to work together to stop bullying and cyberbullying by increasing awareness of the prevalence and impact of bullying on all children of all ages.”

StopBullying.gov A website for everyone-- parents, children, community, teens and educators with videos, articles, and information to help them join hands to stop bullying. This site has government policies and laws about bullying.

Teach Safe Schools:  Their mission is to “help school personnel develop a supportive, safe and inviting learning environment where students can thrive and be successful.” It provides evidence-based information and techniques to assist the school community in the prevention of school violence.

Cyberbulling.us  Resource center for educators, parents and teens with reference material, multimedia and laws

www.isafe.org  Offers curriculum that blends the power of technology, traditional curriculum and the influence of social media to educate and empower students

For Faculty, Staff, and Administration:  Workshop PowerPoint
Provides additional information, resource ideas, and case studies regarding bullying for to begin “Conversations about Bullying.”  A guide to developing an action plan for the entire school and all its stakeholders  is also included.  (if you would like this document in powerpoint format, please email [email protected]

Share Your Ideas 
Do you have a favorite book/video or other resource that you have used successfully regarding the topic of bullying?  Please share with us!  Email your idea to [email protected] or Submit and Share.

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