Self-protecting against bullying

Year level: 4


Students develop a repertoire of strategies to use to protect themselves from bullying. They also examine ways to help someone else that may be being bullied.

Learning focus

Students develop self-protection strategies against bullying and consider things that may make a person more likely to be bullied.   

Key understandings

  • There are strategies we can use to protect self and others from being bullied.

  • To create a caring and safe school, we must let an adult or teacher know if we are being bullied or see someone being bullied.

  • Asking for help is not the same as ‘dobbing’ or ‘telling’.


  • Student Activity Sheet: Ways to protect myself from bullying [one per student]

General capabilities

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Health and physical education(P)

Personal, social and community health

This strand will develop students' knowledge, understanding and skills to support a positive sense of self, to effectively respond to life events and transitions and to engage in their learning. Effective communication, decision-making and goal-setting skills are integral to this strand as they help to establish and maintain relationships in family, school, peer group and community settings, support healthy and safer behaviours, and enable advocacy. Students will source and examine a range of health information, products, services and policies, and evaluate their impact on individual and community health and safety.

Mental health and wellbeing

Blooms revised taxonomy

No Blooms values have been selected.

Inquiry learning phase

No Inquiry Learning phase values have been selected.

Related items

Teaching resource (download) Guides

Before you get started

Learning activities

Whole Class

Students consider aspects of self-respect and identify ways to protect themselves from being bullied. 

  1. Explain that self-respect is when you value and accept yourself and believe that you should be treated well by others. If you have self-respect you are also careful to keep yourself safe.

  2. Conduct a circle talk strategy to ask the following questions. Ask the questions repeatedly so that students are exposed to a range of opinions:

    • How does someone who has self-respect behave?

    • How does someone with self-respect keep themselves safe if they receive a nasty text message or Facebook message?

    • How does someone with self-respect keep themselves safe if one person keeps telling them they can’t join in their games?

    • Can you remind your partner what bullying is? (it’s repeated unkindness to a person, not a single act of unkindness or just one argument)

    • Give each other some examples of bullying. (e.g. name calling; always leaving someone out of a game; using the phone or computer in a nasty way; embarrassing someone; physically hurting someone; hiding or breaking someone’s possessions)   

    • How do you think someone who is being bullied might feel? (highlight feelings such as anger, fear, helplessness, worry, nervousness, sadness)

    • Is it a person’s fault if they are bullied? (no, it is always the fault of the person who bullies)

    • Why do some people get picked on more than others? (they may appear nervous so other children think they are easy to boss around; they may appear different but this is not an excuse to bully someone; they may not stand up for themselves when they have been teased in the past)

    • What does someone look and sound like when they are being confident? (they stand tall, they look people in the eye, they talk with a loud voice in a friendly way, they don’t use a baby or silly voice, they don’t ignore it if someone is mean to them)

    • Why do you think acting confidently can protect you from being bullied? (you look like you have self-respect and might stand up for yourself if you are bullied so someone is less likely to be mean to you) 

    • Why is asking a teacher for help what someone with self-respect would do if they couldn’t stop someone from bullying them? (asking for support means you value and care for yourself and want to keep safe. Asking for help is not dobbing or getting someone into trouble)

  1. Conduct a brainstorm on What can you do to protect yourself from being bullied?

    • Ensure students consider strategies such as thinking for yourself; being positive and happy; being a good loser; not showing you are angry or nervous; staying calm; avoiding areas where you know teachers may not be on duty; telling someone being mean to you to stop it in a confident voice; asking an adult for help if this doesn’t work.

Independent or Small Group

Students consider actions to take if they see someone else being bullied and identify strategies to protect self and others from bullying.  

  1. Discuss with students what they could do if they saw someone being bullied.

    • Show this person you know it’s unfair.

    • Show the person who is bullying that you know it’s unfair.

    • Tell the person who is bullying to stop.

    • Move away together or do something else with that person.

    • Ask a teacher for help if the bullying continues. 

  1. Give each student the Student Activity Sheet: Ways to protect myself from bullying and have them complete it in pairs. Hear feedback and stress that the protection strategies they have identified might be different for different situations. 


Students develop a poster or a class set of big picture books for younger students to inform them of ways to protect themselves from bullying. Encourage them to use the information from the brainstorm and the student activity sheet as quotes for their poster.