The idea of ‘mean girls’ is nothing new. Unfortunately, as long as there have been schoolgirls, there’s always been, and there’s going to be, mean girls. Because middle school is ripe with emotional, physical and social changes, this age can be a prime target for bullying behavior.
Learn more about bullying in middle school, how it can affect academics and how Lake House Academy can help students overcome these challenging social situations.
The Rise of Bullying in Middle School
The transition between elementary school and middle school leaves many students navigating a whole new world. Middle school girls experience:
- Growing romantic interests
- Increased autonomy and more unstructured time
- Navigating new relationships as middle schools often combine several local elementary schools
- Shifting group dynamics that often use friendship to manipulate others
All of these changes, combined with expectations of typical female behaviors (to withhold anger, be considerate of others, care what others think and be overly friendly to everyone), can set girls up for unrealistic expectations and bullying situations.
Bullying, defined as ‘to harm, intimidate or coerce someone perceived as vulnerable,’ can manifest itself in toxic ‘frenemy’ relationships. Girls finding themselves in these situations will often exhibit the following behaviors:
- Always seek approval for decisions from peers
- Apologize for things they did not do
- Bullying is a way to combat insecurity and adolescence and middle school is a heightened time of insecurity and identity formation
- Experience intense jealousy
- Give and receive hurtful criticism
- Gossip about other people
- Worry about embarrassment or rejection
Understanding the Relationship Between Academics and Bullying
It’s not surprising that when a child is bullied, their healthy development becomes threatened. Students who are bullied are at an increased risk for behavior problems, including aggression, hyperactivity and inattention. Additionally, many students who are bullied experience depression and anxiety, which can last into adulthood if left untreated.
Several studies have also linked bullying to poor academic achievement. Again, unsurprising since bullying activity often happens at school. Some students who are bullied even drop out of school altogether, thus making addressing the problem of bullying essential.
How Lake House Academy Can Help
Lake House Academy (LHA) is a therapeutic boarding school for girls. We not only help girls heal from emotional trauma, but we are also a fully accredited school. We know how important it is for our students to learn and provide a comprehensive and rigorous education for each girl. We also work to develop a positive relationship with learning and long-term educational resilience, helping each child rediscover the joy of learning.
For more information, contact us at 855-713-1163. We can help your daughter today!