Below is a 9 step path to assist grown-ups in resourcing children. And at the bottom of the page find helpful resources to disrupt systemic oppression, invest in true self and community, and strengthen resilience and agency.
PROVIDE Real Context
Share stories with kids about the real development of the United States and the impact of colonization and slavery. Specifically seek out stories about Native American, Mexican American, African American and LGBTQI2S+ American histories.
OBSERVE Bullying in Contrast to Equitable Dynamics
Support kids to see, feel and understand the difference between bullying (or power-over) dynamics and equitable dynamics. Framing things within the context of 'bullying' is a first step for kids to understand larger power-over dynamics.
WAKE UP Critical Thinking
Help kids make the connections of how and why bullying happens on a national level. Using real histories coupled with current circumstances, make the connections between who is still being bullied today and how that is tied to colonization and slavery in the past.
Place the onus of oppression on the system. This specifically helps kids to not personally internalize oppression, or take on bullying behaviors as viable strategies. Oppression is a system that can be changed.
RADICALIZE Self Love & Community Love
Always bring the focus back to love, and the inherent value of human beings. This is what we want our kids and communities to internalize to be strong through difficult times.
FEEL the Emotions Fully Flow
Make room for feelings to flow without judgment. Emotional intelligence only occurs if feelings are valued and acknowledged. Emotional strength keeps us flexible and resilient.
UNITE in Peace
Nurture a peaceful world. Nationally, we are currently in a heightened state of divisiveness which is very stressful. We can choose to court peace in our own lives and, on a bigger level, we can notice nuance and commonalities between people while acknowledging the changes that need to be made.
LEAD with Creative Expression
Use creativity to help kids process their feelings as well as develop an understanding about big concepts, like power and oppression. By keeping creativity free and valued we support kids in maintaining not only their agency but also their own unique contribution in the world.
Both When a Bully is President and The Gender Wheel provide kids with context for the development of the United States and oppressive systems and how those systems continue to impact us today.