On March 20, 2019, CandleX was invited to present a workshop on bullying at the Canadian International School of Beijing (CISB). There were approximately 260 students in attendance from grades 6-12. It was an exciting day in which Melena, a long term volunteer with CandleX, presented an anti-bullying workshop aimed at educating the students about bullying.
Topics covered ranged from different types of bullying to how to prevent bullying. To facilitate this, Melena used interactive activities, visuals, and dialogue to help the students understand what bullying is, how it can be avoided or confronted, and what the difference between rudeness and bullying is. She provided antidotes from her own life, including how she had faced bullying in the past. This was complimented by sharing CandleX’s mission and the different resources that are available to students in Beijing.
CISM is leading the way in anti-bullying education and invited CandleX to the school to facilitate an open conversation about what bullying is and how it differs from simply being rude or mean. This workshop complimented “pink shirt day”, which was held at CISM to raise awareness of bullying, particularly cyber bullying. Presentations like these are helpful for students in many ways. They can both bring awareness to obstacles that students are likely to encounter, and provide them with tools that they can apply. The presentation started off by explaining the difference between rude and mean behavior, which happens every so often, and bullying. Bullying is intentional and aggressive, often with a power imbalance, an intent to harm, or repeated acts of threats or violence. The school has a wide variety of students from various cultural backgrounds, and students contributed to an open talk at the end of the session. Melena asked them to speak up and offer their opinions on what bullying could look like and how the students may have experienced it, including a discussion on why some students are bullied, including personal appearance, race, age, weight, intelligence, etc.
The take home lesson from this event was that in order to be more fulfilled and learn more about the world and avoid bullying, students should be open to other cultures or backgrounds and reach out to others for friendship so that you can gain a better understanding of why they act or behave in a certain way.
The objective of this workshop was to provide the students with an awareness, as well as tools, that they could apply in their daily life to combat bullying or to prevent themselves from exhibiting bullying behaviors themselves. CISM itself has been proactive in supporting these children’s mental health and wellbeing, including bullying behaviors.
We welcome more schools to get in touch for collaborations on their anti-bullying campaigns on campus. Please get in touch by e-mail (firstname.lastname@example.org) to organize a workshop.