How To Teach Your Preschooler About Bullying


At the tender preschool ages, most children don't recognize when they are being bullied or when they are bullying others. However, this is a good time for parents to discuss bullying with their children and hopefully prevent lasting, harmful effects. There are 3 easy ways to teach your preschooler about bullying.

1. Discuss Hurtful Behavior

Preschoolers are old enough to know that hitting, biting, and name-calling is "bad" and "mean." And while these behaviors are part of learning and developing (fighting over a toy when learning to share, for example), there is a point where it shifts into bullying. Bullying is repetitive and intentional. A child who has an outburst and steals their neighbor's fruit snacks because they didn't get as many isn't a bully. A child who takes their neighbor's fruit snacks every day without remorse is demonstrating bullying. Other behaviors of a preschool bully include causing

  • Physical Pain: Pushing, biting, hitting, pinching and tripping are some examples of physical pain caused by a preschooler. And size doesn't always matter – even small children can win a physical fight against a larger, more docile child.
  • Emotional Pain: Name calling, teasing, spreading rumors, excluding certain children, and taunting cause emotional pain. Verbal abuse and ostracism both make a child feel dejected and lonely. They struggle to develop socially and lose their self-confidence.

2. Read Books Together

Your child might understand that this behavior is wrong, but may still indulge in it at preschool or may still be a victim of it. A positive way to introduce bullying is to read books about it together. Go to the library and look for children's books about bullying. Many authors have written fun stories with familiar characters to demonstrate situations of bullying. Book characters your child might recognize include Llama Llama, Franklin, Berenstain Bears, and Horrible Harry. These stories can help both the bully and the bullied by helping them:

  • Find Positive Solutions: A bully this young needs to realize that they don't have friends if they hurt others. Most of these books focus on helping the bully become a friend, and this can help your child find positive ways to interact with children their age and stop bullying before it gets out of control.
  • Verbalize How They Feel: A 3- or 4-year old who is being bullied might not be able to verbalize how they feel. Your child may have told you someone is mean, or that they don't like a certain child, but now they have the words to better express what's going on. You might learn that your child is being called names that make them uncomfortable or they are scared to go to preschool because they get hurt. If you know specifics on what is happening, you can be more productive in your approach to change it.

3. Explain Ways to Cope

Despite the often short attention span of preschoolers, they are learning and observing so much in the world around them. You can explain ways to cope with being bullied or the desire to bully. If you take an optimistic approach about it, your child will feel more confident about it, as well. Some coping mechanisms to consider include:

  • For the Bully: Ask your child to help you identify when you are being negative. This will help the child see the behavior and analyze how it affects them. Your child will have more empathy for other children. When you hear about your child bullying someone else, don't respond in anger – this only reinforces negative behaviors. Instead, find suitable consequences such as no TV privileges or fewer sweets for hurtful behavior. Reward positive behaviors. Explaining how consequences work will motivate your child to change.
  • For the Bullied: The first thing a bullied preschooler needs to do is talk to parents and teachers. Let your child know that they will be safer if they tell someone what is happening, even if the bully has threatened them. Help them find a friend at school by arranging for play dates outside of preschool, so they feel more confident going to class. Boost their confidence by praising them for little things each day.

As a parent, it's hard to admit that even a preschooler needs to learn about bullying. But if you take a positive approach at this young age, you can help avoid heartache in the future. For more information about helping prepare your child for preschool, visit websites like


16 December 2015

Dedicating Your Time To Learning

When I started college, I realized that most of my friends and roommates weren't really serious about hitting the books. Instead of studying, most of them worried more about getting invited to parties or going out on dates. However, I realized that my time in college would matter a lot later in my professional life, so I decided to dedicate myself to learning. I spent hours in the library learning course material, and it really started to pay off. I was able to earn my degree a lot faster than some of my colleagues, which was awesome. Check out this blog to learn tips for getting more out of college.