Saturday, July 23, 2016

‘6Rs of Bullying Prevention’

Cover image, 'The 6Rs of Bullying Prevention' by Micele Borba, Ed.D. Images in circular cut-outs show children interacting with each other in friendly and inclusive ways
The latest reading in my ongoing focus upon resources to combat bullying is, 6Rs of Bullying Prevention by Michele Borba, Ed.D (Free Spirit Publishing, August 2016).

This book belongs in every school’s staff-resources collection. Its value is incalculable if it spares one child from bullying and years of post-trauma, but I actually believe it has the potential to transform entire schools.

The “6Rs of Bullying Prevention” are:

1. Rules -- Establish an anti-bullying policy and expectations for respect
2. Recognize -- Teach stakeholders how to recognize bullying
3. Report -- Create procedures to report bullying
4. Respond -- Teach student witnesses how to respond to bullying
5. Refuse -- Help targets refuse provocation and cope with victimization, and
6. Replace -- Help students replace aggression with acceptable skills

Borba describes the 6Rs as a “process,” not a “program,” moreover it’s ongoing and involves an entire school community. Because it’s not a program in itself, it can be integrated with programs already in place at the school.

Bullying prevention “aims to change a culture of cruelty to one of kindness” (location 417 in a digital advance reading copy). Success is measured by “positive and lasting change in student behavior and attitude” (417, 418).

As a person bullied in childhood who hopes to spare others from suffering the same trauma, I found much of practical benefit in The 6Rs of Bullying Prevention.

I’m especially grateful for insights it affords in my professional capacity: a school library paraprofessional who works directly with students and hopes to guide and model for them, respectful and inclusive behaviors. I will look with keen interest over this book’s several lists of books at varying levels of readership: great resources in themselves for building a library collection.

Personal reflection in response to this book:
Bullying and ‘zero tolerance’

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a review copy of this book from the publisher. The opinion expressed is my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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