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Olweus class meeting may 19, 2017

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1 Olweus class meeting may 19, 2017
“Inside of Left Out”

2 Since you started middle school…
Please think about these questions and discuss your thoughts, only if you feel comfortable doing so… Raise your hand if your friendships have changed since you started middle school. It’s normal for that to happen! What are some reasons why friendships might change as you get older? When people who have been friends for a long time want to be friends with new people, it can be painful on both sides and hard to know how to handle the change. What are some reasons why it’s so hard? (Choose a student to serve as the scribe and write down student responses on whiteboard or chart paper – you will refer to it later during the meeting.)

3 how have your friendships changed?
We thought it might be interesting to look at problems that come up when teen friendships change, how that makes us feel, and how we could react in those situation. Since it’s easier to think clearly about options when we aren’t directly involved, we have some situations for you to consider in small groups. They are in the format of an advice blog for teens. Each situation has some questions for you to think about. Then we would like each group to write a response with some advice.

4 Teen2teen advice blog activity
At this time, break up into groups of four or five same-gender students. Each group will receive a copy of one of the Teen2Teen Advice Blog situations from their homeroom teacher. Each group has 10 minutes to discuss the situation in the blog and respond in writing. Don’t forget to refer to the list that was generated in the opening discussion. After 10 minutes, all groups will come back together. Each group will share their blog situation, their answers to the questions, and their advice.

5 Post activity discussion questions
What were the hardest issues your group faced? Why were they difficult? How did you handle them? Was there agreement between what boys and girls thought? In what ways were views similar or different? Most of these blogs are about inclusion and exclusion. How might you be able to reach out to someone and find ways to include them even if you don’t want to be close friends?

6 Post activity discussion questions
Do you think it’s possible to change friends without hurting an old friend’s feelings? Why or why not? Do you think you have to completely separate from old friends when you make new ones? What ideas did you have for people who wanted to change friends, but do it with compassion and kindness? Which ideas do you think would be least likely to hurt someone’s feelings? What words or actions would show someone you were sincere?

7 Post activity discussion questions
Friends become really important during the teen years. Why do you think being part of a group (or being excluded from a group) has such a strong effect on how teens feel about themselves? Is there an advantage to having lots of friends, or just one or a few close friends? What do you think are some reasons why some teens (or teens at our school) get excluded or left out more than others? What does it depend on?

8 Post activity discussion questions
Are kids sometimes excluded based on untrue beliefs or misconceptions about them? What are some examples? How does this happen? Why is excluding someone over and over again considered a form of bullying?

9 Post activity discussion questions
Give some examples of school traditions or things that might not seem so obvious that could cause others to feel excluded. What are they? What can we do about them? Do you think all kids feel welcome in our school? Why? What are some ways we could change that would help others feel more welcome and show we are responsive to the feelings of others who are different from us? What are some options for including others even if you don’t want to be friends? What are some pros and cons (advantages/disadvantages) of doing that?

10 Post activity discussion questions
What role does popularity play in who we choose for friends? How important is popularity in our school? Does our school have any special groups or cliques? How does that affect how others who are not part of those groups feel? What does it mean to be a good friend? What does it take to nurture a friendship? What does that mean?

11 Wrap-up As we get older, we find that some friendships last, while others change or even end. The goal is to have some tools you can use to be kind to old friends even while making new friends and moving on to new things. Relationships are complicated, and it’s not always easy to figure out the best way to handle a situation. You’ve come up with different ideas about how to do that that you can draw from. A good guide is to always think about how you would feel in the same situation and how you would want to be treated.

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