With October being National Bullying Prevention Month in the US, media companies like Cartoon Network, Barnes & Noble, Simon & Schuster and Sesame Workshop are taking strides to raise social awareness about the ongoing issue.
Cartoon Network has enlisted Barnes & Noble and Simon & Schuster to help communicate its Stop Bullying: Speak Up messages to students, adults and educators , as more than 700 Barnes & Noble stores will feature special retail merchandising displays to showcase Simon & Schuster titles with bullying themes. Multiple titles have been selected for kid, teen and adult readers, and are also available on a suggested reading list, which is also available to customers online and at Cartoon Network’s StopBullyingSpeakUp.com website.
During Barnes & Noble’s Educator Appreciation Days, which run from October 15 to 23, Cartoon Network will provide 50,000 Stop Bullying: Speak Up wristbands for educators to give to their students. Barnes & Noble.com will also feature a Stop Bullying: Speak Up page that will include video content from children’s, teen and adult authors, B&N Kids Expert Circle articles with tips and advice on how to deal with bullying.
Facebook and Time Warner’s recently announced Stop Bullying: Speak Up social pledge app, an interactive social media pledge to help stop bullying, will also appear on Simon & Schuster’s website.
On the TV front, Sesame Street is addressing bullying issues in a special episode that will air on October 17 on PBS.
“The Good Birds Club” episode aims to educate preschoolers about bullying and encourage preventative actions to combat aggressive behavior. The episode is part of a larger Sesame Street anti-bullying campaign that includes two new additional episodes addressing other social-emotional issues, a parenting topics page at www.sesamestreet.org/bullying, and a five-part video series entitled Happy To Be Me: An Anti-Bullying Discussion that features experts in the fields of child psychology, advocacy, education and health.
The efforts come as concerns surrounding bullying mount in the US. A reported 56% of students have personally witnessed some type of bullying in school.