A new year should be a positive time for the millions of pupils returning to school this week.
However, a recent survey announced by the Diana Award has taught us that almost half of children have worried about returning to class after the holidays because of bullying.
Bullying can happen when pupils feel powerless, have low self-esteem or are trying to fit in with a new friendship group. Bullies may also be individuals who have experienced bullying themselves. A new school year can bring a lot of new and exciting changes for pupils, but with these changes feelings of fear, loss of power, doubt and nervousness can creep in; all of which create the circumstances that can lead to the start-of-term-bullying that is currently concerning pupils.
We believe that children and young people should feel confident and comfortable enough to speak about anything that is making them feel unhappy or unsafe; speaking up to a trusted adult will always help resolve the situation faster.
Recent research shows that pupils believe that when their relationships with fellow pupils, teachers and their communities are caring, trusting and respectful they feel supported to achieve their full potential.
The idea that wellbeing and academic attainment go hand-in-hand was confirmed by the recent survey from the Diana Award who found that four in ten children were bullied so badly they felt it affected their grades.
At tootoot we have made it our mission to ensure all young people have the key to unlock the support they require to fulfil their potential, and we believe giving children and young people a safe and trusted way to speak-up in confidence will go a long way to supporting this mission.
1 Teach pupils to understand that feelings such as nervousness are normal
2 Support pupils to understand how to manage their feelings and mental health
3 Facilitate pupil integration at the start of the new year with fun activities and ice-breakers
4 Maintain awareness of topics such as bullying and mental health throughout the year
5 Book a demo with tootoot to find out how we can help you give your pupils a safe and trusted way to speak-up about their concerns
With these ideas in mind, we have created a free assembly and two ice-breaker activities that you can use in your school to support your pupils. To access them for free, sign-up using the form below.