Monday, October 4, 2010

PLEASE STOP LAUGHING AT ME: AUTHOR ARTICLE AND GIVEAWAY

 GIVEAWAY ENDED
PLEASE STOP LAUGHING AT ME
BY JODEE BLANCO

ABOUT THE BOOK: 

One Woman’s Inspirational Story...

This powerful, unforgettable memoir chronicles how one child was shunned — and even physically abused — by her classmates from elementary school through high school. It is an unflinching look at what it means to be the outcast, how even the most loving parents can get it all wrong, why schools are often unable to prevent disaster, and how bullying has been misunderstood and mishandled by the mental health community.

You will be shocked, moved, and ultimately inspired by this harrowing tale of survival against insurmountable odds. This vivid story will open your eyes to the harsh realities and long-term consequences of bullying — and how all of us can make a difference in the lives of teens today.

Over the past couple years bullying has come to the forefront of many long overdue conversations and in the media. Bullying is an issue most of us can relate to. As parents, we remember back-in-the-day of at least one bully in our classroom who strived to spoil  the classroom environment for most everyone at some point or another and most unfortunately singled out a particular student to focus his or her “cruelty” upon.

In today’s society there are many additional options available to these bully’s such as cyber-bullying to make life miserable for their victims. In Jodee’s memoir, she courageously invites us to journey along with her through her school years and the self-esteem issues of being “different” from the others. The verbal and physical abuse she endured was terrible but she has taken that first-hand knowledge and put it to a positive force of making parents and educators aware of what is happening and helping others to overcome their own abuse.
Even though there is no clear-cut solution, it definitely offers hope.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Survivor, expert and activist, Jodee Blanco is one of the country’s pre-eminent voices on the subject of school bullying. She is the author of The New York Times bestseller, Please Stop Laughing At Me . . . One Woman’s Inspirational Story. A chronicle of her years as the student outcast, the book inspired a movement inside the nation’s schools and is swiftly becoming an American classic.

Referred to by many as “the anti-bullying bible,” it is required reading in hundreds of middle and high schools and numerous universities throughout the country. Please Stop Laughing at Me . . . has also been recognized as an essential resource by The National Crime Prevention Council, The Department of Health & Human Services, the National Association of Youth Courts, Special Olympics, The FCCLA (Family, Career and Community Leaders of America), Teacher Magazine and hundreds of state and local organizations from the PTA and regional law enforcement coalitions to school safety groups.

Please visit Jodee's website, www.jodeeblanco.com, for more information on her books, tour and speaking engagements.

AUTHOR'S ARTICLE:

School Bullying -- Tips Every Parent Should Know
By Jodee Blanco
 

For the past eight years, I've been traveling the nation's schools, sharing my message with thousands of students, teachers and parents that it's NOT just joking around, that when kids tease and reject one another, they are damaging each other for life. I know firsthand because from fifth grade through the end of high school I was tormented by my peers, as so many other kids are today, simply for being "different."

You would think after speaking at so many schools, they would all seem alike to me. Truthfully, some do. And then, there are those that stand out as remarkable examples of what can be done in the fight against bullying when the adults in the school are courageous and unrelenting in their efforts. The principals at these schools are open and honest with faculty and students, encourage the same healthy communication in return, and are dedicated not only to intervention, but consistent follow-up, something still sadly lacking in too many educational environments.

Schools are stepping up to the plate, but no educator can or should replace the role of parent. If we're to win this war on school bullying, I urge each and every parent reading this column to take stock at home. Is your child a possible victim of bullying? Or are they themselves a bully? When the lights are turned off at night, is your child sleeping, or are they lying awake in the dark, dreading school the next day because they know they will face hurt and rejection the moment they walk through those big glass doors? Do you know the names of the students your child admires, and those they don't and why? Is your child happy or simply putting on a happy face for you?
Schools reach out to me for solutions to these questions every day. Now I am reaching out to all of you who are parents:
  • Pay attention to your child's mood. Don't just relegate grumpiness to back to school blues. It could be fear masquerading as irritability.
  • It's the beginning of the school year. Get involved now before problems start, not after they've begun.
  • Establish a rapport with your child's guidance counselor.
  • Don't be afraid to ask your child specific questions, and learn to listen patiently and without judgment.
  • Get to know the parents of your child's friends and establish an open line of communication and support.
  • Encourage your child to embrace the new students at school. It's an easy way to make new friends.
As parents, we are often overwhelmed by the responsibilities of daily life. Sometimes we are tired and irritable when we get home from work, and the thought of going one more place, doing one more thing is just too much. Let me just say this. Our own emotions, and most especially, logistics, should never get in the way of being present to, and helping our children.

I'm often asked what my own mom and dad did during my lonely school years that helped. It was something so remarkably simple, but it saved my life, and it could save your child's life too.
For most bullied students, whether it's the child who's overtly abused or the one who's ignored and excluded day after day, it's the relentless loneliness that is often hardest to bear. While all the other kids from school are hanging out together, going to parties and having fun, you're sitting at home, aching to be a part of it, waiting for invitations that never come. I remember those dark moments well, and if your child is experiencing a similar sense of isolation, you need to understand that every child needs friends and a social life, and this is doubly true for bullied kids. If school doesn't yield this companionship, seek an interim social life for your child, somewhere he or she can participate with other peers in an activity they enjoy.

Believe it or not, local park districts and libraries are wonderful outlets and can be a lifeline for lonely teens. Reach out to the park district and local library the nearest next town over from where you live that doesn't feed into your child's school, and ask them to email or fax you their list of organized activities for kids. They often will have everything from soccer and cheerleading, to dance, computer clubs, and Reader's Theater, among other options that your child can participate in. My mom enrolled me in a youth community theater program where I finally found other kids my own age that I fit in with.

It's vital however that you go one town over, because if a child is being bullied at school and engages in a park district activity with those same classmates, it defeats the purpose, which is to provide the experience of a fresh start with new faces. You can achieve two objectives by enrolling your child in a park district or library activity: on the days school feels especially lonely, your child has something to look forward to; additionally, this new social outlet will likely boost his confidence, and the more confident he is, the less of a target he will be at school. This will also buy you the necessary time to address any bullying issues with the school.

One of the biggest mistakes parents make is that they become so immersed in trying to deal with the school once they discover there's a problem, that they forget to tend to their bleeding child first. And make no mistake. The bullied child is bleeding, but they're bleeding in the form of loneliness. You can stop that bleeding by finding your child a source for friendship, but you must act swiftly, definitively, and follow up. Don't just print out the brochures from the park district and leave them on a table. Show them to your child, choose an activity together, then pick up the phone, and make it happen.
© 2010 Jodee Blanco, author of Please Stop Laughing at Me . . . One Woman's Inspirational Story

 GIVEAWAY

THANK TO ANNA AT FSB ASSOCIATES,
I HAVE ONE COPY OF THIS VERY
IMPORTANT BOOK TO GIVE AWAY

--U.S. RESIDENTS ONLY
--NO P. O. BOXES
---INCLUDE YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS
IN CASE YOU WIN!
--ALL COMMENTS MUST BE SEPARATE TO
COUNT AS MORE THAN ONE!

HOW TO ENTER:

+1 ENTRY:
COMMENT ON SOMETHING YOU FOUND INTERESTING AT AUTHOR JODEE BLANCO'S WEBSITE BY GOING HERE. THERE IS SO MUCH TO SEE AND LEARN ABOUT THERE! 

+1 MORE ENTRY: BLOG OR TWEET ABOUT THIS GIVEAWAY AND COME BACK AND LEAVE A LINK THAT I CAN FOLLOW

+1 MORE ENTRY: COMMENT ON ANY EXPERIENCE OR OPINION YOU MAY HAVE ABOUT BULLYING AND WHAT YOU THINK CAN BE DONE TO HELP

GIVEAWAY ENDS AT
6 PM, EST,
OCTOBER 17


GOOD LUCK!

30 comments:

debbie said...

I thought it was interesting that even the most loving parents can get it all wrong.
twoofakind12@yahoo.com

debbie said...

For me, it would be to look at each act of bullying individually. My son was seen as a bully to one child, when in actuallity, he was trying to be friends with him. My son is on the autism spectrum, and he didn't know how to be a friend. If one teacher, had taken the time to help instead of accuse, it would have made a difference. My son eventually learned some social skills, but never really made alot of friends.
twoofakind12@yahoo.com

debbie said...

Opps, I misread your first entry cooment. I went the authors site, and learned about her experiences of being bullied.
twoofakind12@yahoo.com

bloggingmom said...

I looked at Jodee Blanco's website and I learned that she was being bullied because she befriended a disabled girl. It sounds like she went through a terrible time in her childhood. I give her credit for making lemonade out of the lemons she was given. I can't wait to read her book. It sounds like important book for all parents to read.

Steve Capell said...

I feel she has mission and found that she gives It’s NOT Just Joking Around!™ seminars to schools. I think this is very important. I remember growing up and school kids can be very brutal. This sounds like a great read and I thank you hosting this giveaway.

steven(dot)capell(at)gmail(dot)com

Tore said...

Please enter me in contest. I use to get made fun of in school too. The book sounds very interesting. Tore923@aol.com

amandawk said...

I found it interesting that the author now gives speeches to kids.
amandarwest at gmaildotcom

amandawk said...

Tweeted http://twitter.com/amandawk/status/26374852232

hendy said...

I learned that she is the main voice for and really started the anti-bullying movement in the schools with her book that described her life as a bully
hmhenderson AT yahoo DOT com

hendy said...

I think bullying is a major problem in our schools and can cause severe psychological/emotional damage. It's a topic that must be addressed until it no longer exists.
hmhenderson AT yahoo DOT com

Anonymous said...

Wow! I just wrote a very long comment and it wasn't saved. To put a long story short, I was very impressed by the author's webswite with advice to the parents, students and schools.

I was bullied in grade school and when I went to my teacher for help. She said "that's your problem!". I felt dumb for asking for help.

CarolNWong(at)aol(dot)com

Anonymous said...

+ 5 SWAG

CarolNWong(at)aol(dot)com

Bethie said...

I went to her web site and learned that Ms. Blanco works with many organizations such as police, PTA's and school boards to help prevent bullying.

lizzi0915 at aol dot com

Bethie said...

My son has one friend that seems to be a target all the time. I don't know why kids just pick someone out, but when they do they are relentless. He is not my son's classes and when he is alone, they bully him.

lizzi0915 at aol dot com

Linda Kish said...

I think a lot of bullies are insecure themselves and bully to feel better about themselves.

lkish77123 at gmail dot com

Linda Kish said...

“The bully never remembers, the outcast never forgets.”

October is National Anti-Bullying Month

Please Stop Laughing at Me… is required reading in hundreds of middle and high schools, colleges, and universities coast to coast.

lkish77123 at gmail dot com

bison61 said...

Blanco has successfully intervened in numerous bullying related attempted suicides and acts of student retaliation. She is a respected crisis management consultant and expert witness in the areas of school violence and peer abuse, and is frequently called upon by the media as an expert interview.

tiramisu392 (at) yahoo.com

nfmgirl said...

I learned that Blanco’s work has been published in Japanese, Greek, Danish and Arabic.

nfmgirl AT gmail DOT com

nfmgirl said...

Blogged:
http://cerebralgirl.blogspot.com/2010/10/book-giveaways-in-blogworld-10-09-10.html

nfmgirl AT gmail DOT com

nfmgirl said...

I saw a show about a project that someone was trying out. They just got an auditorium filled with high school students and started asking students to step forward when something they said applied to them. They would say things like "I have been picked on for being overweight" or "I have been a victim of racism" or "I have thought about killing myself". It really had an impact on the kids. Before you knew it, kids were stepping forward and apologizing to other kids for things they had done to them, kids opening up and breaking down. It was really remarkable.

nfmgirl AT gmail DOT com

allisonsbj3 said...

I learned you can have the author speak at your event.

allisonsbj3(at)gmail(dot)com

allisonsbj3 said...

I think it's a great idea to learn about bullying - especially in a school setting (teachers, staff, and students) so that you know the signs and know how to prevent it.

allisonsbj3(at)gmail(dot)com

Benita said...

I find it interesting and I am thrilled that Jodie can be contacted for public spewaking functions. People need to hear her messages.

bgcchs(at)yahoo(dot)com

Benita said...

Bullying is quite rampant among children especially in schools. It's important for adults to observe and listen actively to their children.

bgcchs(at)yahoo(dot)com

Margie said...

It is inspiring that the author gives many seminars, and tries to help kids not experience the hurt that she felt as a child.
mtakala1 AT yahoo DOT com

Margie said...

I haven't had any experience with bullying, either myself or with my kids. But I think it is important that parents talk to their children about this topic, and make them realize they can fight back.
mtakala1 AT yahoo DOT com

Margie said...

+5 Swag
mtakala1 AT yahoo DOT com

Nancye said...

This web-site is a wonderful resource! I learned that there are areas of the site dedicated to students, educators, parents, and survivors. Each contains tips and strategies on how to seal with bullying. A very comprehensive site.

nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

Nancye said...

Tweet! Tweet!
@NancyeDavis

http://twitter.com/NancyeDavis/status/27674092744

nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

Nancye said...

As a retired educator I know firsthand just how sneaky and mean some kids who are bullies can me. Most bullies are pretty smart and will only bully when they know they won't get caught. It was so frustrating when I was limited in what I could do becuase programming on how to deal with bullying wasn't set in place. Sure, they say they they have a Zero Tolerance Policy on Bullying, but they really don't. I think Jodee's seminars sound very worthwhile and would be very beneficial to a whole community.

nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

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