Thursday, March 8, 2012

Combating Girl vs Girl Bullying Program: The Kind Campaign

Interesting Article about an Anti-Girl Bullying Program

Great article by Alyssa Longobucco (Self Magazine) about two Pepperdine University students (Lauren Parsekian and Molly Thompson) who founded The Kind Campaign. Interesting to see her shared views on an anti-bullying campaign targeted specifically towards females. While it is important to look at the effects of bullying on all students, this article made me think about the unique needs of each gender in that regard. also, the preventative educational measures can be tailored for each gender to be more effective. Also thought the author's insight that youthful bullies can, and often will, grow up to be adult bullies adds more urgency into these anti-bullying campaigns to increase civility and respect not only in our schools, but our society at large. Great article.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

"HUMOR" Gone Awry...Kid's and Even Adults Taking Risks for a Laugh

Kids, and unfortunately even some adults, have participated in some risky behaviors and activities as a "goof", for a "laugh", or even their "15 minutes of fame" on YouTube.

Ashley Long, age 14 died from inhaling helium
Kids being kids and trying new things without using judgement, coupled with a youthful feeling of invincibility can result in disaster. Also, some adults lacking maturity, or in some cases the knowledge of what their kids are doing, can contribute to some of these horror stories. The risky behaviors listed below have been around for at least the last 20 to 30 years. What is different is our 2012 awareness (due to the information age) on how dangerous these seemingly simple "kids will be kids" behaviors really are.

Adult behavior allowing or facilitating these risky behaviors:
  • A school principal (Clinton Avenue School Principal in New Haven, CT) was placed on paid administrative leave due to allegedly observing students participating in the "cinnamon challenge" in the cafeteria and not stopping it. 
  • A Tutwiler Mississippi police chief (Police Chief Terry Tyler) and four of his staff were fired for coercing a mentally challenged youth who was doing community service at City Hall to participate in the "cinnamon challenge". Miss. Police Chief & Staff Fired
  • Katerine McAloon (27 yrs old) allegedly provided alcohol and marijuana to minors and held a party at her house with the helium tank where Ashley Long died from helium poisoning. There were allegedly three other adults present at this underage party. Ashley Long Dies from Helium
Some of the activities are:
  • The Cinnamon Challenge
  • The Choking Game
  • Inhaling Helium 
Videos about Risky Behaviors:

Cinnamon challenge is dangerous

Choking Game is a Problem

Inhaling Helium can be Deadly

Final Comment: Kids being adventurous and having fun in their lives is a part of life. However, we need to be aware of what are kids are doing, who they are doing it with, and what is acceptable and what is not in regards to risky behavior. We need to teach, not inspire, our kids to realize how dangerous these "games" really are and how they can injure or kill themselves accidentally. Like Ashley Long, it was her first party and first time participating in this risky behavior...sometimes the first time can be the LAST TIME. Prepare our kids and young adults for these situations before they occur. Preparedness, not Paranoia.