Wednesday, April 21, 2004

Preventing Violence by Elementary School Children

Preventing Violence by Elementary School Children. I always thought by working in the primary grades that I would avoid violent students. After all, they can't be that dangerous until they get big, right. Boy was I wrong...

From the site:

Young children face a vast and increasing array of challenges as they attempt to develop prosocial competencies and a conciliatory, nonviolent approach to life. They suffer from a lack of closeness with adults, but also from an overabundance of exposure to graphic violence in the news and entertainment media and, increasingly, in their homes and communities. All these forces affect the temperament of children, and each child expresses a unique set of responses to potentially inflammatory situations.

Mental health and education professionals generally agree that it is essential to begin developing prosocial attitudes and behaviors in children at a very young age because aggression that is not remedied nearly always leads to later acts of delinquency (Slaby, Roedell, Arezzo, & Kendrix, 1995). This digest presents an overview of effective antiviolence strategies for use with elementary school children that educators can integrate into their schools and classrooms.

PRINCIPLES AND GOALS OF VIOLENCE PREVENTION PRACTICES

The most effective antiviolence efforts focus on measures that prevent all types of children's bad conduct: "aggression", including undirected anger, such as tantrums, and lashing out at others; "bullying", which is targeting someone thought to be weaker; and "hate bullying", which is victimizing someone of a different (and perceived to be inferior) gender, race, ethnicity, religion, or sexual orientation (U.S. Department of Education, 1999).

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