"Identity safe classrooms are those in which teachers strive to ensure students that their social identities are an asset rather than a barrier to success in the classroom. Acknowledging students' identities, rather than trying to be colorblind, can build the foundation for strong positive relationships. This, coupled with challenging opportunities to learn, can help all students begin to feel they are welcomed, supported, and valued as members of the learning community." —Dr. Dorothy Steele Learn more about identity safety in this interview of Dr. Dorothy Steele, co-author with Dr. Becki Cohn-Vargas (Not In Our School director) of the new book for elementary educators, "Identity Safe Classrooms: Places to Belong and Learn."
After being bullied for his small size and pitch of his voice, DeMonte Smith decided to join Safe School Ambassadors at his middle school to reduce the amount of bullying he saw at his school. Safe School Ambassadors, a program of Community Matters, uses the social skills of influential students to create positive change in schools. This video is part of a series produced by Not In Our School’s parent company, The Working Group, for the Institute for Advancing Unity. This series focus on extraordinary people whose personal choices have inspired others to join in tremendous collective achievements. To turn on closed captioning for this film, first hit play and then go to the bottom right-hand corner and click: "CC" Get the Quick Start Guide to start a Not In Our School Campaign in your school Series Executive Producer: Edith Crawford Concept Designer: Stephanie Francis CEO, Institute for Advancing Unity: Dr. Robert M. Harris, Ph.D.
As a high school student, Alana Garrett mentored fourth grade students and taught them how to prevent and stand up against bullying as part of a Not In Our School project. In this 2009 video she also shares her story of going from a person who was bullied to an anti-bullying activist and leader. Alana is now studying sociology at Baldwin Wallace University and is a community organizer for the Children's Defense Fund where she is working to stop violence among youth in inner city Cleveland.
Three Films Produced and Directed by Sikh Youth
This is the winning video for the United Sikhs and Not In Our School Anti-Bullying Video Contest. This video shares the story of Sahib Singh, a Sikh youth who encountered bullying in Stockton, CA. Sahib turns to his Sikh community to get the courage to stand up and speak out against bullying and intolerance. ABOUT THE CONTEST: In 2013, UNITED SIKHS and Not In Our School invited Sikh students from across California to share their stories. The goal was to create more awareness of Sikh culture and to help schools create more welcoming environments, free of bullying. Here are three videos and a lesson plan to use with students. OTHER WINNING ENTRIES This video was created by the Wilcox High School Sikh Club, in Santa Clara, CA. It depicts the story of a Sikh student explaining his beliefs and practices to his fellow peers. View this video on TeacherTube.
Students take time to reflect on how Not in Our School and Not in Our Town programs affected them. They discuss stereotyping, bullying, and their own experiences with intolerance.
The video, "Lancaster, California: A City United to End School Bullying," profiles students, educators and community members working to create change after two teen suicides, resulting from bullying, devastate two nearby towns. In the aftermath, a local middle school counselor initiates an anti-bullying program throughout the district and students take the lead in standing up to bullying and intolerance in their schools and community. This lesson is part of the Not In Our School Video Action Kit, a comprehensive toolkit featuring films, lessons, and resources designed to motivate students to speak out against bullying, and create new ways to make their schools safe for everyone.
The Public Service Announcement (PSA), “Break Bullying,” depicts adults in an office environment re-enacting the director’s personal bullying experience from middle school. His point: If we would not stand for this in the office, why do we stand for it happening to kids in schools? It is a call to action for everyone to take bullying seriously. Students and teachers alike are reporting visceral responses to the PSA. You will hear a few bleeps—but those bleeps, unedited, are what kids experience daily in their schools. Produced by MAKE, a professional ad agency in Minneapolis, MN. Directed by Mike Nelson and donated to Not In Our Town. Directions 1. Prior to viewing the video, have the students reflect on bullying incidents they have experienced. Teach them the meanings of the terms “perpetrator”, “victim”, “bystander” and “upstander”. An upstander is a person who speaks up and stands up for him or herself and others. Select from the preview questions below, depending on how much discussion of bullying has previously taken place with the students. Write this quote on the board:
At Orange High School in Pepper Pike, Ohio, students are mapping their school to locate the spaces where bullying takes place. After identifying the "bully hotspots," including the cafeteria, media lab, and locker rooms, students created a flash freeze demonstration to raise awareness about bullying, and opened the conversation about how to create a safer school.
When Facing History teachers Jamie Lott and Mary Sok asked their World Cultures class about bullying at their school, the class described the hallways as safe. But after listening to a presentation given by hate crimes task force officer Dave D'Amico, they started a discussion about the widespread problem of online bullying, and how they as a class could take the first steps toward preventing it.