Lots of kids are affected by bullying in schools. It�s best to talk to your child about bullying and what they can do at an early age. This will help give practice in dealing with bullies at school and hopefully help in bullying prevention.

What is School Bullying?
Basically, bullying at school is when one person tries to control another person or have power over them. There are many ways that bullies try to exert this control over their schoolmates.

- leaving someone out of an activity
- not talking to someone
- saying or writing nasty things about someone
- making someone do something they don�t want to do
- threatening someone
- making someone feel scared or uncomfortable
- verbal abuse, such as calling names
- kicking, hitting or other physical confrontations

Why Does Bullying Happen?
Sometimes, understanding why the school bully acts out against certain kids can help a kid better deal with the bullying situation.

There are a number of reasons bullies lash out at other kids. One may be that the bully is deeply insecure and tries to gain control to become more popular. Perhaps being viewed as tough makes other kids in the class want to stay on the bully�s �good side.�

Another reason may be to get attention. Again, this may mean that the bully is insecure and doesn�t have a developed sense of self; attacking is therefore seen as a means to gain attention from teachers and fellow classmates.

It could also be that a bully just doesn�t understand that their actions are very hurtful to other children.

Lastly, sometimes bullies are jealous of the child they bully; the attack is a cover for emotions the bully can�t handle.

Sex Differences in Bullying
Are there bully types? There are definitely different ways girls and boys bully others. While boys often resort to violence or physical aggression, girls often use cliques and verbal and mental abuse to bully. It�s this verbal and mental bullying that can be the most damaging to the bullied kids.

Effects of Bullying
School bullying has some very serious consequences on the bullied kids, which is why it�s important to address bullying at school. Here are just some of the effects of bullying:

- stress : leads to poor academic performance
- stress : leads to physical complaints (headaches, stomach aches, etc)
- panic attacks
- low self-esteem
- shy and withdrawn

It�s also important to look at the big picture. Bullying contributes to youth violence (suicide and homicide) today. In the worst case scenario, bullying plays a major factor in such catastrophes as the Colombine shooting.

Bullying Statistics
The statistics on bullying are absolutely mind-blowing. Bullying statistics highlight the prevalence and serious of bullying as well as the need to put an end to bullying.

- 8% of kids report they have missed one day of school due to bullying
- almost 80% of kids say they�ve been bullied at some point
- 14% have had severe reactions to bullying
- 282,000 students are physically attacked while at high school
- almost 50% of students fear washroom harassment

Think your child might be a victim of bullying at school? Read this article on the warning signs of bullying that will help you to identify common bullying warning signs in order to help you take action against bullying.

How much do you know about safety in youth sports? Click here to learn more about personal safety issues during sports activities.

If you have a problem with bullying and your children, get advice from other moms in our forum.