What do students think of bullying?

Bullying is a critical issue for schools, as it can lead to negative impacts for the person being bullied, bystanders, the person doing the bullying and the school. Providing opportunities for students to understand what constitutes bullying, and to learn to recognise it within their school community, is a key part of an effective bullying prevention program.

Year Level



60 minutes


  • In class activity
  • Take-away activity

SEL Competencies

  • Social awareness
  • Responsible decision-making

Learning Intention

  • Students can understand what constitutes bullying, and undertake an audit of bullying behaviour at their school.

Key Outcomes

By the end of the lesson, students will be able to:

  • identify the different behaviours associated with bullying
  • understand that bullying behaviour is never okay
  • recognise bullying behaviour
  • be aware of the prevalence of bullying behaviour in their school.

activity 01

Setting up a safe and supportive space 15 min

Bullying can be a sensitive topic for some students. It’s important to create a safe and supportive classroom environment that enables active participation and engagement. Below are some tips for creating a safe and supportive space in the classroom.

  • Collaborate with students to develop a group agreement that sets the parameters for class discussions.
  • Make it known that you value all student contributions. Use a range of questioning techniques that open up discussion, rather than trying to get to a quick right answer.
  • Recognise that some students may not feel comfortable sharing, and explore ways of dealing with this.
  • Explore ways to ensure that all students get an opportunity to speak, such as using talk tickets, talk sticks, etc.
  • Ensure that the lesson content provides students with information on where they can get support for themselves or their friends, even if they don’t feel comfortable speaking up in the classroom.


  1. Ask the students to read the bullying factsheet or to watch the bullying video available here.
  2. Give each student five post-it notes and ask them to write on each note a word that describes bullying.
  3. Gather the post-it notes and stick them on a wall in the classroom. Then, as a class, group the words into categories – for example, types, behaviours, impacts, reasons for, etc.
  4. From the groups of words, create a class definition of bullying that defines the nature, type, impact and reasons for bullying behaviour.