By Joseph R. Jones
Recently, one of my college students asked, “How can I teach tolerance when so many parents have anti-tolerant beliefs?” After reflecting, I realized her question was incredibly valid. Bullying is a tremendous problem in schools. In fact, national media recently discussed how another student committed suicide because of bullying. It is such a tremendous problem that national anti-bullying campaigns and anti-bullying legislation have become normal occurrences in many states.
As a college professor, I instruct teachers to teach tolerance as a method to combat bullying in schools. I instruct my students to use children’s books such as “The Princess Boy” and others. I encourage secondary teachers to utilize literature with marginalized characters to open classroom discussions about differences.
Jones is an assistant professor of
education in the School of Teacher Education and Leadership at Radford University.