This week is Pupil Voice Week, a week for celebrating empowerment to create positive change. Pupils across the country will be participating in activities: download your free pack from the Pupil Voice Week website.
The theme is “Use Your Voice”. At Kidscape, we love to encourage children and young people to use their voice to take action against bullying. At our ZAP workshops for children and families affected by bullying, the power of the assertive voice is a key skill that we teach. It can be hard to find your voice, but with support children who experience bullying, or witness people bullying others, can take positive action through a calm, steady response.
Being assertive is a super power that we all can learn. It means respecting yourself and others equally. Here’s our top tips for finding and using your assertive voice.
Your assertive voice is one which sounds strong, calm and confident. Have a go in front of a mirror!
Start by practicing saying “no”. Say it with strength in your voice, clearly, and loud enough to be heard.
Once you’re getting good at saying “no”, try other phrases to stop bullying in its tracks, for example “that’s mine, you can’t have it”, or “stop now”.
Back up your assertive voice through your body language. Hold your body in a way that makes you feel strong and powerful and if you can, make and maintain eye contact - if eye contact is difficult for you, try looking at the tops of someone’s ears or inbetween their eyes!
Practice, practice, practice! Practice in the mirror and practice with a friend or family member. It will start to come naturally the more you try it.
To learn and practice your assertive voice along with other practical tools for dealing with bullying, come to a free Kidscape ZAP workshop for young people and their parents and carers. After attending ZAP, 98% of young people feel more able to stand strong in a bullying situation.
ZAP workshops for children impacted by bullying (available online and in the community)
ZAP workshops bring together children facing a similar situation and teach a range of tools to increase assertiveness, build confidence and help manage bullying situations.