Help your child handle peer pressure with A+ results

Peer pressure can affect your child’s life in more ways than you can ever imagine. Pressure to fit in may have a positive effect if your child’s peers encourage healthy behavior.  But it’s the kind of peer pressure that has a negative influence that we worry about, leading your child to make bad judgment calls, or to participate in risky activities.

No matter what, you need to help your children make their own decisions and not just follow the crowd for the sake of following the crowd. Your children need to learn to do what’s right – right for them and their healthy growth, maturity, and safety.

Fitting In

It doesn’t matter what age your child is, it’s human nature to want to be liked. Everyone wants and needs friends. As kids grow and the hormones start taking up residence, attitudes change. What interested them last month holds no fascination for them today. Priorities change at the drop of a hat. They start moving away from the family and start taking steps into their own world, a world centering on their friends. It’s scary for the child to go through, but it’s even scarier for the parent who watches it happen, and feels helpless.

Facing Fear

Peer pressure is probably a parent’s worst fear. You send them off to school every day knowing that drugs and alcohol are easy to get, weapons can be brought from home, and hate crimes and bullying may be happening.  The school grounds may not be a safe haven for your child. That is why it is up to the parents to talk to their children and take an active role when it comes to shaping their attitudes about what goes on around them.  Conversations with your children will help ease your child’s fears, and your fears, too.

Rock Solid Support

If your child knows you are rock solid in your support, he or she will more likely grow up with a strong sense of self.  They will have a better chance of resisting the peer pressures that could lead them into trouble when they have a base built in the knowledge that you believe in them.  If you are available for your child, he or she will know where to turn to when there are questions and problems.  Be consistent, be firm, be fair, but most of all, be there.

Internal Strength

One way a child can resist peer pressure is to know in their own mind what they want.  Children need to know what they believe in, what they value. A child with a solid understanding of their belief system and values will think twice before stepping out of their comfort zone to do something they know is wrong, something they feel uncomfortable about. Self-confident children believe in themselves and won’t need the approval of another person, even a friend, to feel like they belong.

Outside Interests

Help your child gain confidence, self-worth, and a belief in their very being, and you will be encouraging your child in other ways, as well. These children are self-directed and tend to have activities in their lives that interest them. They don’t need the approval of other classmates because they are confident about what they are doing with their lives.  They can pursue interests simply because they want to, regardless of whether or not the activity helps them fit in.

You won’t always be able to make the world a perfect place for your child.  But, you can help your child live in an imperfect world by giving your child the tools to become a stronger, more self-assured person.  If your child feels comfortable in his or her own skin, has a strong support system, and knows what he or she wants and believes, no amount of peer pressure will sway your child from the right path.  This will ensure your child’s success in life and it will also help you rest a little easier during these topsy-turvy years.

by jacqueline Itson


Cyberbullying on the rise among Preteens

The major increase of preteens exposed to the internet through computers and cellular phones has lead to a rise of cyberbullies and their online victims, creating a digital face for the traditional bullying that occurs within the school premises, suggested a recent study conducted by the University of British Columbia involving 17,000 children aged 8-12.

Cyberbullying among kids is a form of humiliation, intimidation and threat by an aggressive child directed toward another child or preteen through the use of the internet in computers and mobile cyberbullyingfbphones. With more children joining popular social networking sites like Facebook, bullying has been a lot easier to do for many, which has been proven by numerous studies to be detrimental to the psychological development of the victim and likewise linked to depression, school phobia, loss of self-esteem, lowered achievement and worst-case scenario of suicide.

The study from the university revealed that about 25-30% of the youth admitted participating on acts of cyberbullying and being victimized by it, which significantly showed a bigger difference with the 19% who confirmed that they have participated and experienced schoolyard bullying. This showed that children differentiate cyberbullying with that of an actual bullying, indicating an emerging popularity of bullying through the internet.

Various states supplemented additional laws to correspond to the emergence of cyber bullying within the public school system, creating anti-bullying campaigns such as the “STOMP Out Bullying” and “It Gets Better.” There are also many internet websites and resources that address cyberbullying issues, such as “” Many schools are also organizing anti-bullying events on campus to address the issue. The State of Georgia enacted a cyberbullying law (Bill Number SB 250), part of which states that cyberbullying “relates to prohibited acts of bullying at public schools…by use of electronic data or software access through a computer network or electronic technology of a local school system.”

Teachers and parents need to be wary if a child is exhibiting any symptoms of cyberbullying. Open communication is vital to assess the severity of a child’s situation. Certain measures must be observed to avoid the harmful effects of cyberbullying─ educating a child in advance about cyberbullies, reporting the abuse committed by a bully, and blocking the individual from the child’s account. Although education and community awareness is important, it doesn’t replace a parent’s need for vigilance in monitoring their child’s Online activity. It is essential that parents take the initiative to consult a pediatrician for needed psychological support.

Keller ISD 33,000 Students to Join Hands for Anti-Bullying Kickoff


Keller ISD’s will officially launch its anti-bullying program, Reaching Out with Character and Kindness (ROCK), with a Kickoff Event from 9-9:30 a.m. Thursday, Sept. 19 as students and teachers join hands across the district.

Fore more information on Keller ISD’s anti-bullying efforts, visit!

How To Keep Your Kids Safe Online : Character Building and Bullying Prevention – Social issues and challenges affecting our students and schools

How To Keep Your Kids Safe Online : Character Building and Bullying Prevention – Social issues and challenges affecting our students and schools.

Cyber-bullying; Bullying That Follows You Home : Character Building and Bullying Prevention – Social issues and challenges affecting our students and schools

Cyber-bullying; Bullying That Follows You Home : Character Building and Bullying Prevention – Social issues and challenges affecting our students and schools.

Bullying: Children Face Bullying 24/7

Child Advocacy in Action

July 30, 2013 Anti-Bullying Summit Keynote Speaker, Knoxville, TN

Dr. Steven Edwards: July 30, 2013 Anti-Bullying Summit Keynote Speaker, Knoxville, TN

Bullying:  Children Face Bullying 24/7 In Today’s World

Bullying, the biggest problem facing middle and high schools today, was the topic of the Anti-Bullying Summit held in Knoxville on July 30, 2013.  The Summit was well attended by educators, law enforcement and others who work with children across East Tennessee.  Bullying, seen across all sectors, is unlike bullying in past generations.  In today’s wired/wireless world, bullying is a 24/7 problem. 

Dr. Steven Edwards, keynote speaker, advised the audience that “what we don’t address, we accept.”

How do we address bullying when the dynamics have changed?  According to Dr. Edwards, change stems from leadership.  It is necessary to give the students a voice in the process.  It is necessary to find out their perception for effective decision-making to end bullying.

Regarding bullying, Dr. Edwards speaks from experience as…

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