A 10-minute lesson plan for K-5 students.

When we think about bullying we typically picture the bully, or the person being mean and hurting someone on purpose, and the victim, the person being bullied.  There are, however, two other kinds of people involved in bullying – bystanders and upstanders.

A bystander is someone who sees bullying, but does nothing to stop it.  They don’t help the bully, but they don’t help the victim either.  Most of the time when bystanders see bullying happen, they know it’s wrong, but they don’t know how to go from being a bystander to an upstander.

An upstander is someone stands up for and helps the victim.  Upstanders can really have an impact on stopping bullying behavior.

Let’s watch this short video clip and see if you can identify the four roles of bullying:  http://www.values.com/inspirational-stories-tv-spots/72-locker

Who was the bully in the video?  The victim?  The bystander?  The upstander?

How do we go from being a bystander to an upstander?  Brainstorm some ways that you can be an upstander!

Here’s a few ways you can be an upstander:

  • Be a buddy.  Bullies like to pick on people who are alone.  Bring people into your group.  Sit with lots of different people at lunch.  Play with different people on the playground.  Show people that they have a friend.
  •  Interrupt.  When you see bullying, you can interrupt it.  Think of a way to help the victim get away from the bully.  Invite them to walk to school with you, or sit next to you in class.
  • Speak out.  If you see someone saying mean things to someone else, stop them.  Tell them that what they are saying is not ok.  Don’t let a bully hurt someone else if you can stop it.  Sometimes speaking out even encourages other bystanders to become upstanders with you!
  • Tell someone.  It is ok to tell someone if you see bullying happen.  You are not tattling to get someone in trouble; you just want to make sure everyone is safe.

What else can you do to be an upstander today?

For more information about how to be an upstander, click here.

Click here to learn more about character education.

The Four Faces of Bullying
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