EXPERTS SAY EARLY MIDDLE SCHOOL MAY BE PRIME TIME FOR BULLYING
The first year of middle school can be stressful enough, but it may also be the time students and parents need to worry most about bullying.
During other years, boys who bully tend to be disliked by peers. But research from the University of Illinois shows that boys who bully in sixth grade are popular.
Researchers say boys might turn to bullying in sixth grade to cover up feelings of being the “little kids” in school.
Bullying is serious. Don’t look at it as “part of growing up,” even if the bullying is not physical. Any of the following can be bullying:
- Calling others names or insulting them. (This is different than light-hearted, good-natured teasing between friends.)
- Taking or destroying possessions
- Making threats.
Researchers found that children who are bullied are more likely to:
- Feel anxious.
- Feel depressed
- Think about suicide.
Report bullying to your child’s school. Most schools have strict policies against bullying. Work with school officials to help your child.
Source: “In early middle school, popularity and bullies often connected,” News Bureau of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, www.news.uiuc.edu/gentips/00/09bully.html. Reprinted with permission from Copyright© 2009, The Parent Institute
ARE YOU HELPING YOUR CHILD MAINTAIN HEALTHY EATING HABITS?
The school year is well past its halfway point and good habits may slip. Answer yes or no to the questions below to see if you are supporting healthy habits in your middle schooler:
- Do you offer your child healthy foods? These include fruits and vegetables, whole grains and lean protein.
- Do you encourage sleep? Research shows that middle school students need at least nine hours a night to function at their best.
- Do you promote exercise for the whole family?
- Do you talk with your child about the dangers of underage drinking and illegal drugs?
- Do you encourage your child to have fun? Stress is a major problem for many middle schoolers. Your child needs healthy ways to “blow off steam” and enjoy life.
- How well are you doing?
Mostly yes answers mean you are helping your child stay on track for health right through the school year. For no answers, try those ideas.
Reprinted with permission from © Copyright 2009, the Parent Institute