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Proactive SEL Lessons to Help Prevent Bullying

Posted by PATHS Program LLC on Oct 4, 2023 11:57:00 AM

October is National Bullying Prevention Month

Did you know that one in five students report being bullied? According to the National Bullying Prevention Center, having a school-wide bullying prevention program has been shown to decrease bullying by 25%? 

emozihs-students-hallway-scopeit-posterStudents who are bullied are at a higher risk of depression, lower academic performance, anxiety, and have a higher dropout rate. Bullying is a complex subject, and parts of it are addressed in all five CASEL competencies (self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, decision-making, and relationship skills). Some topics that cover bullying include perspective-taking, empathy, problem-solving, and having respect for others. 

The PATHS® curriculum and Emozi® life skills lessons have many resources teachers can use to help address bullying in the classroom or online if teaching remotely. 

Teachers are also encouraged to use the flexibility built into the PATHS and Emozi programs to use specific events as teachable moments. For example, holding problem-solving meetings when an issue arises or facilitating the use of the classroom mailbox to initiate discussions about bullying. 

For Elementary Students

In the PATHS Program (grades PK-5), there are emotional lessons teachers can use to help students work through the feelings associated with bullying, plus related lessons in the list below. 

For classroom conversations in grades 4 and 5, the novel studies explore themes associated with bullying, such as the grade 4 book The Hundred Dresses by Eleanor Estes or the grade 5 book Maniac Magee by Jerry Spinelli. 

PATHS Program Bullying Lessons & Resources


Sad (L7), Mad or Angry (L10), Scared or Afraid (L11), Solving Problems (L26), Frustrated (L32), Worried (L35)


Scared or Afraid, Safe (L17), Mad or Angry (L18-19), Worried (L20), Self-control (L22-24), Problem-Solving (L25-26), Frustrated (L35), Lonely (L41), Making Friends (L42), Repairing Friendships (L44)


Self-control (L8), Anger Management (L9), Sad (L11), Scared or Afraid, Safe (L13), Mad or Angry (L14), Worried (L16), Problem-Solving (L20), Lonely (L22), Frustrated (L24), Tolerance (L28), Making Up With Friends (L34), Fair/Not Fair (L41), Malicious (L45), Rejected/Included (L46), Teasing (L47), Bullying (L48)


The Golden Rule (L4), Self-Control (L6-8), Problem-Solving (L9), Anger Management (L11), Tense (L12), Avoiding Gossip (L25),  We are all Unique (L26), Respecting Others (L27), Problem Identification (L28-30)


Golden Rule (L5), Problem-Solving (L6), Anger Management (L8), Problem Identification (L15), Consequences (L16), Refusal Skills (L19), Problem Solving (L21), Making New Friends (L26), Forgiving/Resentful (L31), Rejected, Excluded (L34), Gossip (L36), Bullying (L37), Helping Others in Bullying Situations (L38)


Golden Rule (L3), Ways to Calm Down (L4), Stress (L6), Problem-Solving (L7), Making Good Choices (L22), Responding to Bullying (L23), Helping Others in Bullying Situations), Conflict (L27-8), Stating the Problem (L28), Sorry (L31)

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For Middle School Students

In Emozi® Middle School (for students in grades 6-8), explicit lessons, self-regulation skills, gratitude challenges, reflection activities, and Socratic Seminars explore many bullying-related themes. 

Through Emozi’s Socratic Seminars, students learn how to help one another understand the ideas, issues, and values reflected in a text during a student-led group discussion. Students participate in conversations fostered by open-ended questions about the text, which encourages active listening, communication, and finding common ground.

Emozi Middle School Bullying Lessons

Grade 6

  • Unit 1, Lesson 4: Bullying
  • Unit 2, Lesson 8: Healthy and Unhealthy Relationships
  • Unit 2, Lesson 9: Making and Maintaining Friendships

Grade 7

  • Unit 1, Lesson 11: Conflict
  • Unit 2, Lesson 1: Showing Respect
  • Unit 2, Lesson 9: Bullying

Grade 8

  • Unit 1, Lesson 7: Belonging and Rejection
  • Unit 2, Lesson 8: Relationships
  • Unit 2, Lesson 9: Conflict

Emozi® High School Bullying Lessons

Emozi® High School is designed to be delivered in mixed-grade classrooms. Several lessons cover bullying under the CASEL competency of Relationship Skills, including discussions around peer pressure, conflict resolution, empathy, positive relationships, self-advocacy, avoiding gossip, and much more. Download the scope and sequence to see a complete list of lessons.

Preview the Emozi Program

Educators know their students best and will learn how to address these issues developmentally appropriate and meaningfully in the classroom. The PATHS and Emozi Programs can give you the tools to do so. If you need additional resources, check out the ones listed below.

Additional Bullying Resources

Topics: Social and emotional learning, PATHS® Program, Emozi® Middle School, Training & Support, Emozi® High School