Effective communication skills to combat bullying

Teaching communication skills to young people, particularly assertive communication skills, is a useful strategy to help them stand up to bullying. Giving students the opportunity to reflect on their values and beliefs around communication is a good starting point in creating change.

Year Level



5 minutes


  • In class activity
  • Year assembly activity

SEL Competencies

  • Self-awareness
  • Social awareness
  • Relationship skills

Learning Intention

Students recognise the importance of challenging their beliefs and attitudes as a way to prevent bullying behaviour.

Key Outcomes

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

  • identify their attitudes and beliefs regarding effective communication
  • recognise and respect the diversity of opinions that exist within the classroom
  • understand the importance of challenging attitudes and beliefs for effective bullying prevention.


Instructions 5 min

  1. Place the five signs in different areas of the room.
  2. Explain to the students that the theme being considered today is effective communication skills. Remind them that there are no right or wrong answers.
  3. Read aloud to the class the following statement, and then ask the students to move to the sign that best expresses how they feel about it.
    "It’s better to go along with the crowd, than to be singled out as different."
  4. Ask the students to share their views with others who have moved to the same sign. If time permits, invite them to share their ideas with the whole class.
  5. Read out another statement from the list below. Again, ask the students to move to the sign that best expresses how they feel about it.
    • When I’m upset with a friend, I message them about it.
    • If my friend had a problem with me, I would want them to have a face-to-face conversation with me about the issue.
    • I’m pretty easy-going, but I’ll stand up for myself when I feel strongly about something.
  6. If time permits, repeat this process with another statement from the list above.


Providing an opportunity for students to challenge their beliefs and attitudes about effective ways to communicate can help change bullying behaviours.

More information for students: