Thursday, 15 March 2007


“They seemed to have taken all of their smoothly cultivated ignorance, their exquisitely learned self-hatred, their elaborately designed hopelessness and sucked it all up into a fiery cone of scorn that had burned for ages in the hollows of their minds- cooled- and spilled over lips of outrage, consuming whatever was in its path.”

I thought that was a rather astute analysis of bullying from Toni Morrison’s “the bluest eye”.

The issue of bullying has been bugging me for a while now. At the start of the year, one of my students ( we’ll call her L, I’m no good at making up names!) told me some of the boys were throwing things at her in the corridors to get a reaction out of her, encouraged by some of the girls. I dealt with the situation by putting everyone involved on report. The boys eased off after a while, but the girls just made things worse for her. Comments, giggling and excluding her from the group- all of the things teenage girls are so good at. It got to the point where L stopped coming to lessons. I eventually “dealt” with the situation by transferring her to another tutor group, which of course is not really dealing with the problem at all. The other girls involved are actually quite nice. They admitted it’s just group mentality and not wanting to stand out from the crowd.

Recently two students, F and C, had a falling out. They used to be friends so I tried to investigate what it was about. Apparently, F had “stolen” C’s boyfriend. C is very popular in the college, and started a campaign to make sure F was as hated as possible, which included spreading some very vicious rumors and name calling. F has now missed a whole week and is thinking of leaving the college. I have been advised by her form tutor to just stay out of it, as F will probably be leaving anyway, due to a range of other problems. But it’s the name calling and the backstabbing that gets tome the most. No one deserves to be treated like that, it’s not nice.

So anyone have any ideas or tips on how to deal with bullies? was anyone bullied at school and found a way of dealing it. Or maybe some of you were bullies yourself… hhm that would be a good way of getting an insight into how bullies’ minds work. So come on, own up. You can remain anonymous of course..


Undescovered genius said...

i was a bully, jus better a hiding it.... you should teach them how to do things properly.
they're pretty pathetik r, a bully with class is one to be admired.
nehu, im sure u must have afew crying in a dark corner experiences...

Anonymous said...

i was bullied. she was white, i'm asian. she came from a proper scally family. her mum was a bully too. i met the bully's mum once at parents evening - she couldn't even pronounce my asian name.

i remember once in cookery class i used the last of the chicken oxo cubes and she had this huge argument with me in front of all my classmates. she said some really horrible things. the worst thing was the rest of the class just sat there, laughing. actually, there was this one muslim guy, i think he fancied me. he stook up for me.

neway, i've moved on with my life now. i don't know what happened to the bully. i can't even remember her name. it was jade something. jade.........i remember now. the bully's name was jade goody

hema said...

UG- you know it is said that genius is 1% inspiration and 99% perspiration, so perhaps you just need to work harder if you want to be discovered:)
i like hessa and amal, much better than HiBaH! thanks.
i don't admire any type of bully thank you very much! i can imagine you as a bully actually..
as for crying in the dark experiences.. why do you think i'm so sensitive about it! no, only kidding i managed to dodge the bullies at school i think. just some comments whenever i got english essays back, but i deserved them, i was a bit of a swot!
y- i actually did a lesson on the whole jade goody bullying issue. it was quite interesting to hear about different reactions to it..

YMiss said...

y: Love the humour!

Hema: Think that's one of the reasons I didn't want to go in to higher education teaching. The bullying becomes alot more vicious and inhumane.
I know bullying in a primary setting and in a college setting are completely different but they seem to involve the same basic principles. Single a person out, call them names you know will hurt them and then try and take away any friends they have.
I had some of that during my placement. I dealt with it by keeping in the people involved in during break. Asked a TA to stay in the room. Then I let them talk and say in front of each other what there version of events was. Turned out to be a misunderstanding, a classic scenario of he said, she said.
One of situations such as name calling or fighting are easy to deal with. Not too sure how I would deal with a constant bully. At the moment too me the best idea seems to be too get the girls too talk to each other.

Undescovered Genius said...

c, Bob who i work with is slightly overweight. and he gets ppl calling him names, but hes so witty and shtums them so they have nothing to reply with bcz they have no idea wat he just said....moral of the story (well kinda)...bullies are dumb.
n hema...i like to keep under the radar, god knows who might kidnap me if they found out how clever i am.

Anonymous said...

ymiss: thankyou. love your blog