Lily has been having issues with a bully in her kindergarten class. At first, I thought that it was only Lily, but now it seems that many other kids have issues with this particular kid as well. A few weeks ago, we had one of the bi-annual meetings with Lily's teacher, discussing her progress and any issues she may have. And since it is really something on Lily's heart, we also discussed that particular boy. Which options there are to not only help Lily but also the boy.
It actually turns out that the two have a few things in common. When Lily started kindergarten, she also still had issues with the language. She started to have issues with other kids, which was partly caused by the language barrier, and partly by Lily trying to be one of the adults, the only group of people who have offered stability in her life. But the big difference is that Lily was a 3-year odl girl back then; the boy is now 5, only a year away from 1st grade.
Tonight at dinner, Lily suddenly started bad-mouthing the boy, how he was annoying and always bothering everyone and that she would never let him write in her kindergarten class-mate book. While we definitely dislike bullying, ostracizing a kid that obviously has troubles and not way to express his feelings than being mean or violent against others is not a solution either. And bad-mouthing is certainly not tolerated in our house.
She became quiet and listened as we explained to her possible reasons why the boy behaved the way he does, and that excluding him would not help the situation but rather make everything worse. We are really lucky that Lily is not only a very kind little girl (mostly) but that she also has a very soft heart and feels for others. We suggested that instead of writing him off as a trouble-maker, she should meet him with friendliness and show him that he is still welcome in the group.
She definitely got the idea, so we need to see how the next weeks go and if the situation improves. Keep you fingers crossed!