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Northwest Girls Coalition Alternative Aggression Workshop


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90 minute session delivered to the Northwest Girls Coalition in Seattle. Sugar and Spice But Not Always Nice: Gender, Bias, and Aggression in Adolescent Girls. Odd Girls Out. Queen Bees. Girl Bullying. When did we lose our sweet little girls? Examine the cross-section of socio-emotional development, gender bias, and adolescence in the emergence of the “Mean Girl” phenomenon. What can we do as parents, educators, and supporters to promote healthy relationship among girls?

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Northwest Girls Coalition Alternative Aggression Workshop

  1. 1. Northwest Girls Coalition Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee Seattle Girls ’ School Sugar and Spice but Not Always Nice: Gender, Bias, and Aggression in Girls Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee (
  2. 2. About Seattle Girls ’ School Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee (
  3. 3. Agenda <ul><li>Gender Differences </li></ul><ul><li>Gender Bias </li></ul><ul><li>Alternative Aggression </li></ul><ul><li>What Can We Do? </li></ul><ul><li>Discussions </li></ul><ul><li>Resources </li></ul>Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee (
  4. 4. Disclaimers and Other Food for Thought Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee (
  5. 5. Gender Differences Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee (
  6. 6. <ul><li>Brash </li></ul><ul><li>Troublemaker </li></ul><ul><li>Strong </li></ul><ul><li>Competitive </li></ul><ul><li>Physical </li></ul><ul><li>Silent </li></ul><ul><li>Clever </li></ul><ul><li>Mistake-Prone </li></ul><ul><li>Belligerent </li></ul><ul><li>Intuitive </li></ul><ul><li>Well-Behaved </li></ul><ul><li>Delicate </li></ul><ul><li>Cooperative </li></ul><ul><li>Emotional </li></ul><ul><li>Verbal </li></ul><ul><li>Pretty </li></ul><ul><li>Perfect </li></ul><ul><li>Nice </li></ul>Gender Bias Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee (
  7. 7. Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee (
  8. 8. Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee (
  9. 9. Social Development Joanne Deak, Girls Will Be Girls <ul><li>Self Awareness (0-2) </li></ul><ul><li>Parallel Play (2-3) </li></ul><ul><li>Interactive Play (3-6) </li></ul><ul><li>Transitory Friendships (6-8) </li></ul><ul><li>Friendship Clusters (8-10) </li></ul><ul><li>Best Friends or Generalists (10-12) </li></ul><ul><li>Cliques (12-14) </li></ul><ul><li>Interest-Based Friendship Groups (14+) </li></ul><ul><li>(Almost) Universal Acceptance (Seniors) </li></ul>Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee (
  10. 10. Special Considerations Sexy --- Slutty Powerful --- Bitchy Smart --- Bookish Cheerful --- Uncool Confident --- “All That” Athletic --- Jocky Close to Friends --- Lesbian Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee (
  11. 11. Process Break Where is your daughter (or students) in the landscape of gender norms and social development? Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee (
  12. 12. At the Crossroads Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee (
  13. 13. Alternative Aggression <ul><li>Relational Aggression </li></ul><ul><li>Indirect Aggression </li></ul><ul><li>Social Aggression </li></ul>Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee (
  14. 14. Relational Aggression includes acts that “harm others through damage (or the threat of damage) to relationships or feelings of acceptance, friendship, or group inclusion.” Relational Aggression Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee (
  15. 15. Indirect Aggression allows the perpetrator to avoid confronting the target directly, making it seem as though there is no intent to harm. Indirect Aggression Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee (
  16. 16. Social Aggression Social Aggression is intended to damage self esteem or social status within a group. Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee (
  17. 17. Friends and Frienemies Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee (
  18. 18. Definition of Conflict <ul><li>A clash between two individuals or groups </li></ul><ul><li>A disagreement or argument about something important </li></ul><ul><li>Etc. </li></ul>Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee (
  19. 19. When It ’s Bullying <ul><li>Power is uneven </li></ul><ul><li>Intent to harm </li></ul><ul><li>Repeated and sustained </li></ul><ul><li>Efforts to hide from adults </li></ul><ul><li>Advocacy not changing behaviors </li></ul>Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee (
  20. 20. Outliers of Alternative Aggression Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee (
  21. 21. Process Break How have you seen alternative aggression play out in your daughter or students ’ lives? Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee (
  22. 22. It ’s Too Big… Why Even Try? <ul><li>It ’s doesn’t affect everyone… </li></ul><ul><li>How bad could it be… </li></ul><ul><li>It ’s not that big a deal… </li></ul><ul><li>What about their studies… </li></ul><ul><li>It couldn ’t get any worse… </li></ul><ul><li>They ’ll get over it… </li></ul>Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee (
  23. 23. <ul><li>• Bullying 15-15-70 </li></ul><ul><li>• Health and Safety </li></ul><ul><li>• Psychological Pain </li></ul><ul><li>• Academic Risk </li></ul><ul><li>• Explosive Release </li></ul><ul><li>• Long-Term Scars </li></ul>It ’s Too Big… To Ignore Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee (
  24. 24. Alternative Aggression: Where Does it Happen? Students report that alternative aggression happens in the following areas: 55% during recess or break time 52% in the cafeteria 42% in the hallways 37% on the way home 36% in the restrooms 36% in the classroom 29% in gym class 25% in after school sports 17% in after school activities Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee (
  25. 25. Alternative Aggression: Signs That She Might Be Aggressive • Her friends do what she wants to do. • She isn’t intimidated by the other girls. • Her complaints about other girls are limited to the lame things they did or said. • She is charming to adults. • She won ’t (or is very reluctant to) take responsibility when she hurts someone ’ s feelings. • If she thinks she’s been wronged, she feels she has the right to seek revenge. Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee (
  26. 26. Alternative Aggression: Signs That She Might Be Victimized • She is more sensitive, unhappy, cautious, anxious, quiet and withdrawn than other youth. • She is generally insecure and non-assertive, and react by withdrawing when targeted by other students (rather than retaliating or asserting). • She exhibits sudden change in behaviors: showing signs of depression, not eating, cutting herself, letting herself go, losing interest in favorite things, quitting teams, etc. • She may be embarrassed to admit that she is being bullied. She may blame herself or feel guilty. Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee (
  27. 27. Advice for Girls… WITH YOUR FRIENDS… • Talk openly about fears of losing friends, fears of conflicts • Confess your own stuff. Feel the relief of your own imperfection. • Don ’t gang up or reject friends because they tell the truth. • Comfort and reassure each other. • AGGRESSION IS NATURAL, NORMAL, AND HEALTHY Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee (
  28. 28. Advice for Girls Continued <ul><li>Know when it is bullying </li></ul><ul><li>Stand up for yourself </li></ul><ul><li>Ask them to stop the behavior </li></ul><ul><li>Seek healthy support </li></ul><ul><li>Tell an adult </li></ul>Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee (
  29. 29. Advice for Parents: DON ’T <ul><li>Think “this is my fault.” </li></ul><ul><li>Belittle the problem. </li></ul><ul><li>Over-empathize. </li></ul><ul><li>Tell her what to do. </li></ul><ul><li>Become the Fix-It Parent. </li></ul><ul><li>Blame the bully OR the victim. </li></ul><ul><li>Tell her that being nice and kind will always lead to friends. </li></ul>Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee (
  30. 30. Advice for Parents: DO <ul><li>• Provide opportunity/access to kids outside of school. </li></ul><ul><li>Help her develop strong interaction and social skills. </li></ul><ul><li>• Let her friendship choices be hers, but offer to help. </li></ul><ul><li>Provide sanctuary, sounding board, and support. </li></ul><ul><li>Role-Play difficult conversations with her. </li></ul><ul><li>Give her healthy outlets for her feelings. </li></ul><ul><li>Respect and nurture her true self. </li></ul><ul><li>Try Teeter-Totter Parenting. </li></ul><ul><li>Be a listener, not a fixer. </li></ul><ul><li>Affirm your daughter. </li></ul><ul><li>Share your stories. </li></ul><ul><li>Stay Involved. </li></ul>Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee (
  31. 31. D.E.A.R. Conflict Resolution Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee (
  32. 32. AIMS Conflict Problem Solving Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee (
  33. 33. Empowering the Bystander <ul><li>Many bullying approaches centers around agents and targets. Why not address the 70% who are bystanders? </li></ul><ul><li>Empowering bystanders keeps the focus away from blaming the targets or agents. </li></ul><ul><li>Empowering bystanders gives you a chance at creating a new “cool.” </li></ul><ul><li>Empowered bystanders can cover “backstage spaces.” </li></ul><ul><li>A mass of empowered allies shift the balance of power. </li></ul>Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee (
  34. 34. Ally Skills <ul><li>Don ’t bully </li></ul><ul><li>Speak up when someone else is being bullied </li></ul><ul><li>Assume positive intentions, but don ’t let that assumption make you silent </li></ul><ul><li>Ask questions to clarify and to educate </li></ul><ul><li>Don ’t make the person who is bullying into someone who is getting targeted </li></ul><ul><li>Actively include those who are easily left out </li></ul><ul><li>If you know someone is getting bullied, tell an adult at school or at home </li></ul><ul><li>Keep the climate healthy </li></ul>Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee (
  35. 35. Advice for Schools <ul><li>The Four Ps </li></ul><ul><li>• Policy - A comprehensive anti-bullying policy that includes alternative aggression. </li></ul><ul><li>• Programming - Training for teachers and staff on alternative aggression and gender bias. Support for teachers and staff in acting to combat bullying and bias. Self-esteem and conflict management programs for students. </li></ul><ul><li>• Practice - Consistent and meaningful follow-through in dealing with acts of bullying. Coverage of unsupervised spaces where bullying occurs most. </li></ul><ul><li>• PEOPLE - Critical mass of people who are supportive AND active on all levels. </li></ul><ul><li>EMPOWER THE BYSTANDERS! </li></ul>Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee (
  36. 36. Undoing Gender Bias Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee (
  37. 37. Questions and Answers Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee (
  38. 38. Presenter Information <ul><li>Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee </li></ul><ul><li>6th Faculty and </li></ul><ul><li>Professional Outreach </li></ul><ul><li>Seattle Girls ’ School </li></ul><ul><li>2706 S Jackson Street </li></ul><ul><li>Seattle WA 98144 </li></ul><ul><li>(206) 805-6562 </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee (
  39. 39. Resources <ul><li>Joshua M. Aronson, Ph.D., “Improving Achievement & Narrowing the Gap,” Learning and the Brain Conference, Cambridge, MA, November 2003 </li></ul><ul><li>Roy Baumeister, Case Western Reserve University, Various Social Psychology Experiments on the Effects of Social Exclusion </li></ul><ul><li>Beatbullying Toolkit for Teachers, </li></ul><ul><li>“ Cycle of Bullying,” North Central Educational Service District, </li></ul><ul><li>Kevin Jennings, GLSEN (Gay Lesbian and Straight Education Network) </li></ul><ul><li>Allan G. Johnson, Privilege, Power, and Difference. </li></ul><ul><li>Tara Kuther, “Understanding Bullying,”, </li></ul><ul><li>John Medina, Talaris Research Institute, various studies on theory of mind and power. </li></ul><ul><li>Michael Thompson & Kathy Schultz, “The Psychological Experiences of Students of Color,” Independent School Magazine, </li></ul>Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee (
  40. 40. Gender Specific Resources <ul><li>JoAnn Deak, Ph.D., Girls Will Be Girls: Raising Confident and Courageous Daughters, How Girls Thrive </li></ul><ul><li>Pooja Makhijani, Under Her Skin: How Girls Experience Race in America . </li></ul><ul><li>John Medina, Talaris Research Institute, various studies on early gender differences in competition and play and “Love Lab.” </li></ul><ul><li>Northwest Girls Coalition, Protective Factors for Middle School Girls - What can Parents Do? </li></ul><ul><li>Mary Pipher, Ph.D., Reviving Ophelia: Saving the Selves of Adolescent Girls </li></ul><ul><li>Rachel Simmons, Odd Girl Out, Odd Girl Speaks Out, Curse of the Good Girl </li></ul><ul><li>Harriet R. Tenenbaum, “Gender Achievement Motivation,” Learning and the Brain Conference, Cambridge, MA, November 2003. </li></ul><ul><li>Rosalind Wiseman, Queen Bees and Wannabes: Helping Your Daughter Survive Cliques, Gossip, Boyfriends & Other Realities of Adolescence, Queen Bee Moms and Kingpin Dads </li></ul><ul><li>Naomi Wolf, The Beauty Myth. </li></ul><ul><li>Naomi Wolf, Promiscuities . </li></ul>Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee (