The school premises can be a daunting place for a child with social difficulties. A culture that has a strong tendency to ‘take the piss’ within a soc
The school premises can be a daunting place for a child with social difficulties. A culture that has a strong tendency to ‘take the piss’ within a social group is regarded as banter amongst most. However, it could be argued there is a fine line between banter and emotional bullying which will be addressed further in this blog.
There are many things that fall underneath the umbrella of social exclusion. Within a school environment, this could be seen via pupils being excluded from participating in activities or hurtful rumors being purposely spread. These are just to name a few, but the consequences of emotional bullying can leave a pupil isolated and lead to a distasteful schooling experience.
From a parent’s perspective, it may be hard to detect due to the emergence of social media. Social exclusion could carry on after school through these mediums and it must be a challenge to intervene in this space to inspect as it intrudes their privacy.
On the other hand, if the child was to address the problem to a teacher or someone of authority, punishments for the ‘bullies’ may not solve the issue. From hindsight, it may be viewed as the logical thing to do as negative reinforcement could stop the isolation of the individual but the damage could have already been done.
It is quite possible this would enhance the social exclusion of the victim even further as the child could be seen as a ‘grass’ or ‘snake’ which could have a further hindrance to their inclusion in social groups or activities. This could explain the child’s reluctance to open up to a parental figure about their problems.
This blog by no means is encouraging the child to keep quiet about the situation but is just highlighting the importance of teachers and parents being vigilant in hopes to notice the changes of behavior or social exclusion quickly.
Another point to add, assuming a temporary drift between a child and their social group as social exclusion would be wrong as it could be an in-house matter which could be resolved in a few days. It is up to the senior figures of teachers and parents to ask whether it is a cause for concern or just a minor falling out.
It is a sensitive subject to address and should be treated as such because handling this situation the wrong way could lead to more ongoing problems in the future. The child may start to misbehave or act out of character to let out their frustration.
Offering support and lending an ear to listen to their problems if they choose to voice their concerns is a helpful start for teachers and parents. However, giving advice on the problem may not always be the answer. Some children may just want to vent without the lesson being taught because they feel no one knows the feeling of social exclusion because they are not in their shoes respectively.
Prevention of social exclusion is probably the most prominent cause of a happy child at school and generating a wide network of friends inside and outside school is a good platform. Getting your child involved in extra-curricular activities and sports clubs is a great way of meeting new people and helps develop social skills. Sports clubs aids in a pupil feeling successful and valued in a social group due to the competitiveness in a sport. It also enhances social acceptance if the sports club is associated with the school.
No one should be made to feel excluded from a social group or community and the thought of emotional bullying to a child is one of dislike. In the unfortunate case, this occurs to a child, encouragement to focus on more positive things should be high on the agenda. Keeping the child busy with their favorite hobby or pursuance of dreams should be pushed because distance needs to be created between the child and negative vibes.
As hard as it is to intervene in a child’s social media activity, efforts should be made to monitor the situation to whether any unfriendly relationships develop online. It is highly unlikely to be able to get them to delete all social accounts and ultimately could provide a wedge between parent or teacher and child.
Lastly, if a child speaks ill of people within the social group it is not an indicator to join in and also speak ill of them. This creates bad habits and would not be received greatly if it transcended into their work-life when they eventually leave school. Always be respectful and show dignity to others as after all, teachers and parents are role models for the children.