Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Award winning author Lea Schizas on Bullying

Lea is my guest today. Her book Bubba and Giganto: Odds Against Us deals with bullying and how it can make bad situations worse, even deadly, if the bullying isn't prevented. I asked Lea to write an article about bullying to tie into her book. Hopefully, we will reach folks who feel that they have been bullied at some time or another and put an end to this cruelty.

Bullying is an act that needs to be observed closely by parents and by school administrators. It’s not a subject to be taken lightly because bullying in elementary school is a bit of name calling, light pushing, and shunning friends. Once in their teens, bullying becomes aggressive: stealing money from students, use of weapons, ambushing victims and beating them to a pulp. As adults, their aggressive manner can escalate to more serious crimes.

When you sit down and think that if someone intervened a child who would push, call names while in elementary school, you would be giving them a chance to see life from a different and peaceful perspective.

Have we all become blind to our surroundings? Do we not see children hitting and punching each other as we drive/walk by school grounds? Would it take that much of our time to go into the school, notify the person in charge/or look for teacher supervisors on the school grounds and inform them a child is being hurt? Are administrators afraid of the children? Of the parents?

My kids experienced light bullying (if there is such a thing) while in elementary school and I wanted to write a story where kids can relate not only to the victim (Giganto), but to the bully(Jason) as well. There is always a reason for a bully’s actions but it is how everyone deals with those emotions I am showing my readers.

Here in Montreal, schools are trying to combat bullying by in-school suspensions, expelling the students, after school detentions, bringing in the parents to talk to them, and other ways. It’s never too late to talk to a child about the consequences and dangers of bullying but this lesson should begin from an early age.

Tired, worked long hours, need to prepare supper, I’ll take a quick nap – all excuses I’ve used in the past and know others have, too. Yet, our children were not asked to be born, we gave them the gift of life and as parents we need to continue mentoring them until the day we believe we’ve done all that we can.

For more ordering, contact the publisher or you can go to I believe Lea also has a teacher's guide available; for more information, contact Lea via email at


Vivian Zabel said...

Lea speaks against the bullying problem eloquently, and Bubba & Giganto illustrates the problem that continues today.

Lea said...

At some point, bullying has to be addressed and recognized for our children's well-being.

Cheryl said...

Our school district has an anti-bullying program in place. They have assemblies that talk about how to deal with bullies and they also follow it up with certain group activities to cement in tolerance of others.

Of course, I always wonder what is going on inside the heads of the bullies during these things.

Best of luck with your book Lea. It sound wonderful!


Nancy Famolari said...

Bullying is a serious problem. I hope this book can be used to spark discussions of this problem. I think it's a must read for middle-grade students and teachers.

Mayra Calvani said...

Here in Brussels, where my kids go to school, bullying is taken very seriously and it's harshly punished.
What you say is very important, Lea. After all, isn't the person who sees it and ignores it as guilty as the bully?

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