Beyond bullying in primary schools: Theory, instrumentation, and intervention

Year: 2007

Author: Craven, Rhonda, Finger, Linda, Yeung, Alexander

Type of paper: Refereed paper

Bullying in the school has been universally recognized as damaging to the physical, psychological, social, and academic development of children. Anti-bullying interventions should therefore start early in the primary school. A well-designed anti-bullying program should be underpinned by theory, tested through rigorous evaluation methodology with strong instrumentation, and implemented by teachers who share a sense of ownership by provide input to the activities and materials for the intervention. The present study demonstrates how theory, instrumentation, and intervention should be intertwined for a strong intervention program that can be incorporated in the Australian primary school curriculum. Through research and development procedures, intervention materials were developed through the joint effort of researchers and teachers, the activities were designed to be compatible with the key learning areas of primary education and adaptable to the diversity of student abilities, and the teachers implemented the program in their classes after being trained by the researchers. Future development of effective anti-bullying interventions should attempt to cascade the positive effects of teacher professional development by strengthening mentoring processes whereby more experienced teachers can share their knowledge and skills with less experienced teachers.