How can we combat bullying and increased violence in schools affecting students' learning capabilities?

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Answered by: Barb, An Expert in the Learning and School Category
Bullying and increased violence in schools affecting students' learning capabilities is in the news more frequently than ever before. Both interfere with the school and with learning. Getting to the core of what is causing the violent outbursts and the bullying, will go a long way in understanding how to put an end to it. Parents need to get involved with the school to help combat this problem. These problems affect the students at school and they affect a child's learning experience.

Students attending high school today grew up in a world where technology ruled. In previous generations, children spent most of their free time interacting with other children outside of the school environment. This helped to strengthen social skills and helped to form the basis of healthy relationships with others as adults.

Communication between children and young adults through social networking sites or video games is not the same as interacting with others out in the real world. Most children, and adults, create a persona online that is not necessarily who they really are.

Sticking to the rules of a social networking site, or a forum for like-minded individuals is easier than getting along with others in school, at work, or at play. Although children can learn computer and keyboarding skills from spending hours on the Internet, nothing they find online can teach them how to get along with others. Spending time with children their own age will help them learn the skills they need to form friendships, even with others whose likes and interests differ from theirs.

Parents can help their children with problems of bullying and increased violence in schools at home, by encouraging them to limit the time they spend on the computer, and encouraging them to go out and play with other children. When they are very young, children will benefit from play dates arranged by their parents. When they reach middle school age, they are ready to choose who they want to socialize with, and in high school will either have a few very close friends, or a large number of casual friends.

On the subject of school violence, child psychologists now know that one of two things result in violent acts committed by children. One is outward expressions of problems in the home. If adults, whether teachers or parents, give children the chance to express their thoughts and feelings in a safe atmosphere, it may help to prevent troubled kids from acting out physically.

The other is harder to detect and may go unnoticed until something happens that triggers a violent episode or outburst. Some violent behavior is the result of a physiological or mental disorder. If a complete physical examination shows nothing wrong, the next step is to speak to mental health professionals. These professionals can suggest counseling, therapy, or in the more extreme cases, medication to solve some of these issues.

For those children who are experiencing problems at home, sometimes simply talking about the problems can help. At the school level, teachers and school administrators can foster healthy relationships among students by shutting down the computers on occasion, and having rap sessions.

During these sessions, teachers can foster conversations between the students about school, about friends, and anything else that will get the kids talking to, and about, each other. Discussing problems, talking about goals, and revealing facts about themselves, will help high school students understand each other better.

Teaching the old basics of reading, writing, and arithmetic is great, and these skills form the basis of what young students need to learn to be successful in the workforce. Teaching and talking about relationships with others, along with healthy interactions, will form the basis of a well-adjusted adult. These will also help to combat combat bullying and increased violence in schools affecting students' learning capabilities.

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