Return to Headlines

Eastchester Middle School Students Stand Up to Bullying

Eastchester Middle School students explained how they could put an end to bullying by taking action. October is National Anti-Bullying Month, and during a recent lesson, sixth graders discussed what it means to be a bystander or an upstander.

An upstander supports another by directly intervening in a situation or by getting assistance from another individual. A bystander stays silent and does not seek help.

The students watched a short video explaining the concepts and included segments from the television show "What Would You Do." Then they played a game where they identified anti-bullying strategies in the video clips and discussed how a person could diffuse a negative situation. 

School Counselor Anne Schmitt conducted the lesson and explained the difference between empathy and sympathy to reinforce the importance of reaching out to others.

After role-playing, the class designed anti-bullying posters and journaled about the lesson. Here are some of the students' thoughts:

"Being an upstander means always standing up for somebody, making someone feel better, and always looking out for people," said Gavin Oakes. 

Giuliana Giampa stated, "To me, being an upstander means stepping in when nobody else is and taking action to prevent someone from getting hurt or bullied.”

"Judging people is a bad thing to do because you may close out your opportunity for a new friend before you even get to know them," wrote Vanessa Stabile.

Log onto the EMS Counseling Website to view the posters and discover more anti-bullying messages.