Friday, September 28, 2007

Stop Cyberbullying!

Cyberbullying is considered the intentional harm of someone through the means of electronic communication. Almost all of our students know how communicate electronically by instant messaging, email, text messaging and social networking. This makes cyberbullying a problem in schools and school districts all around the world. According to a survey by the Pew Internet & American Life Project, about 1/3 of teens say they have experienced some form of cyberbullying. Bullying has always been in issue in schools, but cyberbullying is a little bit different. Technology today has given us the opportunity to stay connected with each other 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Unfortunately for those who are being cyberbullied, this means they do not get any safe haven away from the abuse or humiliation they feel. Nancy Willard of the Center for Safe and Responsible Internet Use has written a very resourceful book about cyberbullying. She has also posted many resources for students, parents and educators about cyberbullying on her website. The resources are in PDF format and offer an explanation of what cyberbullying is, the types of cyberbullying that take place and strategies to help prevent it from happening.

I strongly suggest that you explore these materials so that we can teach students the effects that cyberbullies have on their victims and make the internet a safer place for everyone.

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