Teacher Makes Important Point About Bullying Using Apples
When you get hit, you bleed and bruise, but when you get called names or are harassed online, the impact often goes unnoticed. This is what Rosie Dutton, a teacher in the U.K. who tours schools teaching children about relaxation and mindfulness, taught students about bullying and her innovative method is going viral.
Dutton used two apples. Before the class started, she repeatedly dropped one apple on the ground causing it to bruise inside but not on the outside. Then, she went to work.
Dutton asked the children to call one of the apples names and tell it how much it sucked, while the other got nice compliments. She then cut both apples open and the kids saw what their harsh words had “done” to the apple that was dropped on the ground secretly.
Dutton explained her lesson on the Relax Kids Tamworth Facebook page where she writes:
“Today in one of our classes I introduced the children to two apples (the children didn’t know this, but before the class I had repeatedly dropped one of the apples on the floor, you couldn’t tell, both apples looked perfect). We talked about the apples and the children described how both apples looked the same; both were red, were of similar size and looked juicy enough to eat.
“I picked up the apple I’d dropped on the floor and started to tell the children how I disliked this apple, that I thought it was disgusting, it was a horrible colour (sic) and the stem was just too short. I told them that because I didn’t like it, I didn’t want them to like it either, so they should call it names too. Some children looked at me like I was insane, but we passed the apple around the circle calling it names, ‘you’re a smelly apple’, ‘I don’t even know why you exist’, ‘you’ve probably got worms inside you’ etc.
“We really pulled this poor apple apart. I actually started to feel sorry for the little guy. We then passed another apple around and started to say kind words to it, ‘You’re a lovely apple’, ‘Your skin is beautiful’, ‘What a beautiful colour (sic) you are’ etc. I then held up both apples, and again, we talked about the similarities and differences, there was no change, both apples still looked the same.
“I then cut the apples open. The apple we’d been kind to was clear, fresh and juicy inside. The apple we’d said unkind words to was bruised and all mushy inside. I think there was a lightbulb moment for the children immediately. They really got it, what we saw inside that apple, the bruises, the mush and the broken bits is what is happening inside every one of us when someone mistreats us with their words or actions.”
Dutton’s post about her lesson has been shared over 160,000 times. Dutton herself was surprised at the enormous reaction. She posted an update on the original post to clarify that after she made her point, she told the kids she had dropped the apply repeatedly on the floor and that you could feel the bruising but not see it.
However, the point she made came across loud and clear.
“Unlike an apple, we have the ability to stop this from happening. We can teach children that it’s not ok (sic) to say unkind things to each other and discuss how it makes others feel. We can teach our children to stand up for each other and to stop any form of bullying, just as one little girl did today when she refused to say unkind words to the apple,” she writes.
“More and more hurt and damage happens inside if nobody does anything to stop the bullying. Let’s create a generation of kind, caring children.”