Recognize a Teaching Opportunity
Once you address the reasons for the behavior, explain that bullying is unacceptable in any place, with any person, in any situation within family or society. Identify actions you and your child believe will help when the child feels an inclination to be cruel.
The action may be:
- going to a trusted teacher to say, "I'm feeling mean/scared/angry."
- taking out a pencil and paper and drawing
- moving to another physical location, such as the other side of the playground
- taking a different route home from school
Then, role-play the new behaviors with the child, and lather on the praise when he or she succeeds!