Gearing Up for Bullying Prevention Month
October is National Bullying Prevention Month, which means now is the time to start preparing materials to educate and support your students. This month’s Upbeat News helps educators gear up to prevent bullying. We have tips for using student leadership as a tool to address bullying, an activity that teaches students “it’s cool to be kind,” and information on homophobia and transphobia in schools.

We are also excited to introduce our new release Zach Stands Up by William Mulcahy and illustrated by Darren McKee, which tells the story of Zach finding the courage to be an upstander when he uses his stand-up-to-bullying STAR.

New Release Spotlight
When Zach sees his friend Sonya being bullied at school, he doesn’t know what to do. After remembering what his teacher taught the class about bullying prevention, Zach creates the stand-up-to-bullying STAR: speak up by talking to the people being bullied, take off by helping them leave the area, ask questions about how they are feeling and actively listen to the answers, and report what happened to an adult as soon as you can.

Tips & Tools from the Free Spirit Blog
Amanda C. Symmes, LICSW, a practicing social worker, explains what relational aggression is, how to spot it, and how to address it in your school.  Read now.
Christa M. Tinari, coauthor of Create a Culture of Kindness in Middle School, provides a list of 10 ways to sustain your bullying prevention efforts after National Bullying Prevention Month is over.  Read now.
Educational grants available for your school or community:

The Clif Bar Family Foundation’s small grants are awarded for general organizational support or to fund specific projects in the foundation’s priority areas: protecting Earth’s beauty and bounty, creating a robust and healthy food system, increasing opportunities for outdoor activity, reducing environmental health hazards, and building stronger communities.

Eligibility: US-based 501(c)(3) organizations or groups with a 501(c)(3) fiscal sponsor.
Prize: The average grant awarded is $7,000. 
Deadline: Applications are due February 1, June 1, and October 1, annually. 

The NEA Foundation provides grants to improve the academic achievement of students in US public schools and public higher education institutions in any subject areas. The proposed work should engage students in critical thinking and problem-solving that deepen their knowledge of standards-based subject matter. The work should also improve students’ habits of inquiry, self-directed learning, and critical reflection. Funding preference is given to projects that incorporate STEM or global learning. The foundation also strongly encourages education support professionals to apply.

Eligibility: Current NEA members who work in public preK–12 schools, as public school education support professionals, or at public higher education institutions.
Prize: Grants of $2,000 and $5,000 are awarded.
Deadline: Applications are due February 1, June 1, and October 15, annually.
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Adapted from End Peer Cruelty, Build Empathy: The Proven 6Rs of Bullying Prevention That Create Inclusive, Safe, and Caring Schools by Michele Borba, Ed.D., this document (PDF) lists the warning signs of bullying to help you identify children who might be targeted.

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Upcoming Events and Conferences 

September 6–9: Florida Association for the Education of Young Children (FLAEYC), Orlando, FL

September 20 at 2 p.m. CST: Free webinar presented by Myles Cooley: “Understanding and Supporting Students with Mental Health and Learning Disorders”

October 3–5: Heartland Fall Forum, Minneapolis, MN

October 3–5: Zero to Three Annual Conference, Denver, CO

October 24 at 1 p.m. CST: Free webinar presented by Amadee Ricketts: “Story-Times and Transitions with Heart”

October 25–27: Association for Middle Level Education (AMLE), Orlando, FL

October 26: Weird! The Musical performance, Mohawk, NY
Special Offer
Get 30% off and free shipping on books featured in this month’s newsletter:

Sale ends September 30, 2018. Use code SEPT30 at checkout. Shop now. 
“Students don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.”
—John C. Maxwell, American author and leadership expert