By Aime Mendoza
This post is written by a student in READ 4351 Learning through Literacy. Students in this course are part of the high school and all-level teacher preparation programs and are pursuing certification in a wide variety of subject areas.
More and more today, we are seeing how bullying is affecting the way many adolescents are being treated in schools in all grade levels. Bullying is a form of taunting and belittling another person for a superficial feeling of empowerment that consists of emotional, physical, and verbal abuse. This type of problem can manifest itself to other issues such as drug use, alcohol abuse, violence and most importantly, suicide.
How many of us can say that they were bullied in school but actually told someone about it? For some adolescents, seeking any type of help can seem awkward and embarrassing for them and prefer to stay quiet and in the background. How many of us can admit to seeing someone being bullied and not do anything to stop it? It is an issue that most people tend to ignore for the fear of getting bullied themselves. There are also some adults that can admit that being bullied at school led them to a life of violence or attempting suicide, all due to the abuse they received by a bully. At times, we don’t see the signs of bullying, until it is too late. Enough is enough!
As a future educator, we must recognize that bullying happens in every shape or form and it is up to those who truly want the best for their students to stop this from happening. Although, the topics about bullying and suicide are somewhat controversial, teachers and parents can learn to be more aware of the situation by providing interesting and relevant books for students to read for a classroom library or for personal use. Books about bullying can inspire teens to gain courage to speak out and stand up for themselves, as well as accepting the fact that they are not alone. These types of books can establish a better understanding for teachers to seek those students in need as well as grasping the interest of students who are the aggressors but are willing to change their ways. Here are some books about bullying and suicide that can help an adolescent cope with those critical issues that torment them.
By the time you read this, I’ll be dead By Julie Anne Peters
This book is about a young girl name Daelyn who has a history of being bullied at school and plans to attempt suicide, once again. Through the help of a website, she writes a blog about herself with details of the horrific events from her past that led her to commit suicide. What is interesting about this book (at the end of the book is that it includes questions and facts about bullying) for the reader to think about long after they finish reading.
My time as Caz Hazard By Tanya Lloyd Kyi. This book is about a young girl named Caz who torments a girl named Dodie. Caz, being young, is influenced by her new friend Amanda to do awful things to Dodie. When they discover that Dodie kills herself, Caz realizes that she must change her ways. What intrigued me about this book is how the narrator is the bully herself and how accurate the issues are to the lives of many adolescents.
Many schools districts, here in the valley, are now more aware of the situation and are taking extra measures to ensure the livelihood of those in need. Here is a video link about one schools effort to protect the victims of bullying and how they are creating a safer environment for students.
La Joya ISD Steps Up Anti-Bullying Efforts: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R6shCn97Sqs&feature=colike
Here is a link to help school districts learn more about bullying:
Bullying in Schools and what to do about it by: Dr. Ken Rigby