A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this website.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this nonprofit initiative was designed by the PACER Center -- an advocacy organization for young people with disabilities -- to teach teens how to identify and deal with bullying. There's plenty of solid advice, and it's repeated in a variety of ways -- videos, stories, quizzes, and more -- smartly catering to teens with different learning styles. Nothing on the site is inappropriate, but parents should be aware that some of the content might trigger upset feelings in teens who've been bullied. Demi Lovato is the site's spokesperson.
Is it any good?
TEENS AGAINST BULLYING takes an in-depth look at the psychology of bullying, demonstrating keen insight into the teen psyche rather than merely telling visitors to "be nice." There's plenty of practical advice on how to deal with bullying, as well as creative ideas for spreading the anti-bullying message -- like writing an article in the school newspaper or doing improv exercises. The Flash-based site employs lots of multimedia features to make the content interactive and interesting; it does the job well, although sometimes it gets a bit confusing in its complexity.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about cyberbullying and check out the site's Bullying Unplugged section (under Respond). Why would teens who don't bully in "real life" send nasty texts or IMs, or post hurtful things on social networking sites? Have you ever experienced this -- or initiated it -- or do you know someone who has?
Families can talk about the Person First section on the site (under Respond), which discusses how to treat people with disabilities in a respectful manner. How are teens with disabilities treated at your school? Why are people who are "different" so often targeted by bullies? What kinds of representations of teens with disabilities do you see on TV and in other media?
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