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Upstander Story: Middle School

Read through the following story and the Upstander behaviors. It is hard to be an Upstander every time. Sometimes you have to think about what would be the best thing to do.

  • Have you ever been a bystander and you wanted to do something to stop the bullying but did not know how?
  • What do you think is the best thing to do for each of these stories?
  • Which ending feels the best for you?

Angela and Kimmy, 7th graders, have been best friends since the 3rd grade. Kimmy has started hanging out with a girl named Claire. Although Angela does not know Claire very well, she does know that she bullies a lot of other kids at her school. One day, Angela sees Kimmy and Claire making fun of another classmate, Mandy. Angela does not know the classmate very well, but she has always been nice to her. What should Angela do? Stick up to her friend and another girl who is bullying or help Mandy?

Angela sees Claire and Kimmy bullying Mandy again. Even though she is a little nervous, she is also mad at how they are treating another person.


What should Angela do?

  • This time Angela confronts them head on: "Hey I don't think that's very nice of you treat Mandy that way. Mandy has not done anything to you and now you're just hurting her feelings. That is called bullying and it is not cool."
  • This time Angela tells a teacher. Angela does this quietly because she is afraid of getting bullied herself. She knows it is not wrong to tell a teacher about a problem when someone is getting hurt. This is not tattling. When bullying occurs, it can really help out the bullied child. Her teacher thanks her for being brave and standing up for someone she does not know well.
  • This time Angela talks to her friend in private: She tells Kimmy that she does not like how Kimmy acts when she is around Claire. They are mean and "cliquey" and it just is not Kimmy. Angela knows that Kimmy will either feel bad or be angry with her. But she decided that either way, it is more important to do the right thing and not feel guilty inside. She is proud of her decision.
  • This time Angela ends the situation. Just as Claire and Kimmy are starting to pick on Mandy, Angel invites her to go to the library together. Claire and Kimmy are speechless. Angela is able to stop a bullying episode. Mandy is grateful for a new friend.
  • This time...(make up your own Upstander story!)
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