B1 Intermediate US 52 Folder Collection
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How does a child develop a pattern of bullying others,
of using their power aggressively, to control and distress others?
Well, it can come from many, many different sources.
The child can be genetically pre-disposed to that.
There are some genes that we know lead to aggressive behaviour,
but those genes don't express themselves if the child is raised
in a nurturing and caring environment.
The child can learn by observation, so the things that happen at home
really make a difference. And the child can learn in the peer group
because, often, other children stand around and give encouragement to
those who bully. So, what about the home?
I think this is the hardest thing for each of us to think about.
As parents, we have a huge role in shaping a child's development.
And that means we have to think, every moment of every day, about
what it is that we're doing, and what it is that we're teaching by our behaviour.
Now, I'd love to tell you that I never bullied my three children.
And that just wouldn't be true.
I got home, after a really hard day at work, and they were screaming
and hungry, especially when they were little, and sometimes I'd lose
my temper, and I'd yell at them. I didn't mean to, but I did it, and
then I would look at their faces and see how frightened they were.
They were very frightened because I'd used my power
aggressively to control them, and it distressed them. So, what I had
to do was I had to repair, and that's probably one of the most important
things we can do as parents, is tell children you're sorry, tell children you
made a mistake, and that it's not good to use power aggressively
or to use aggression to solve a problem.
For children, it's as if we're on the stage and they're in the audience
all the time. They watch what we do, they watch how we speak,
they watch how we interact with other adults and with them, and
that's part of the biggest learning in their lives.
So, we have to be aware of what we're doing and how we're doing it,
because if we're not, if we're using power aggressively, if we're fighting,
if we're yelling, that's just what children are going to learn.
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What makes a bully?

52 Folder Collection
doris.lai published on January 13, 2020
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