Children Learn Non-Violent Resolutions To Bullying

By: Melanie Lofton Email
By: Melanie Lofton Email

The ever growing bullying problem has forced parents and schools to find new ways to deal with it. This week students learned another way, and it's something even adults can try.

Bullying is online and in the classroom.

It takes many forms from simple teasing to violence, which are sharp contrasts from what was seen in JMU's Memorial Hall Friday.

Children's voices filled the room with beautiful melodic notes, as they wrapped up a five day peace camp. It was sponsored by the Gandhi Center For Global Non-Violence.

Volunteer Joshua Stairs says "we show them a lot about peace leaders like we've talked about Desmond Tutu, and obviously Gandhi. We've also talked about Nelson Mandela and how they want to make change in their countries. So you know if they want change in their country, in their life or if they feel like they're being bullied they can take the concepts that these peace leaders used and they can use them in their lives."

This peace camp wasn't only about how to deal with bullies, but the children did learn lessons that can empower them to handle bullying situations if they encounter them.

Regarding bullies, eight-year-old June Holm said, "sometimes they're asking for other people's food and sometimes they get in arguments."

Through exercises, art and song a message of non-violence was sent and received.

Alexis Fleming summed it up by saying "treat people the way you want to be treated."

Holm added, "don't argue... and just talk it over."

The Gandhi Center For Global Non-Violence offers programs throughout the year.

To check them out go to www.jmu.edu/gandhicenter.


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