What to do if Your Child Has Been Labeled a Preschool Bully

Parkland-Child-preschool

Preschool Bully at Child Preschool

While you may find it difficult to see your little angel as anything other than sweet and good, if your child has taken part in school bullying in any way, you will need to assist in putting a stop to it. Here’s what you can do to put a stop to this behavior if you suspect your child is taking part in school bullying:

Contact Your Child’s Teacher
If you notice your preschooler displaying more aggressive and bossy behavior than usual or compared to his peers and you are concerned about your little one being part of any form of bullying, it is important that you contact your child’s teacher immediately. The thought alone of admitting your child could potentially be a bully can be embarrassing, especially as it is such a sensitive topic, but it’s better to address the issue earlier rather than later. Working with your child’s teacher you can brainstorm ideas to address the unwanted behavior your child might be displaying at school. It is important to remember that your child is constantly learning through everyday experiences, such as play time or meal time, about how to interact with their peers and sometimes they will not always get it right. That is why it is important that you work with your child’s teacher to help guide your child in the right direction, showing them what is and is not acceptable behavior.

Be Conscious of Your Own Behavior
Children pick up many of their social skills from observing the behavior of those closest to them. If you lash out at someone who has cut into the queue at the grocery store or talk badly about a work colleague in front of your child, they will pick up on this and, in some cases, mirror these behaviours with their peers. If you know the saying; “Monkey see, monkey do” then you will know this cannot be truer than in the case of children. Thus it is important, as the adult, to lead by example – resisting the urge to lash out at people in front of your child.

Home Rules = School Rules
If you notice your child being unusually aggressive or mean at home, it is important to put an end to that behavior right away. He might think it is acceptable to take that same behavior to school, which will result in parents being called in for a bullying child. So to prevent any unnecessary drama, put a stop to any aggressive behavior your child might display at home. One way to achieve this is to mirror school rules with home rules. For example, if your child’s preschool does not allow play wrestling then do not allow your child to play wrestle at home. Through consistency in both your child’s home and schooling environment, you will help wean out any unwanted behaviours.

Love is All You Need
If your little one is bullying other children at preschool, she may just be trying to build his self-esteem or get attention from the adults around her – be it good or bad attention. One way to remedy this behavior is to give your child lots of one-on-one attention and hugs; as long as it does not immediately follow a report of bullying, as you do not want the extra love and attention associated with bad behavior. Set aside time every week to spend a couple of hours together. For example, a walk in the park with just you and your child or simply sitting down with them and drawing a picture will give you opportunities to communicate – you can ask them how their week has been and how they feel about home and school – this may just be the confidence boost they need to settle any bad behavior.

Remember that no child can change overnight, so be patient with them. But if you still do not see an improvement after trying all the above steps, do not be afraid to speak to your pediatrician about your concerns.


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