CKOB's Bullying And Cyberbullying Prevention Programs Are Top Requested At Schools

Friday, September 7, 2018

For the past 39 years Chattanooga’s Kids on the Block has provided educational puppetry programs to schools and communities using the nationally recognized Kids on the Block puppets, focusing on awareness and prevention topics. With bullying and cyberbullying on the rise, CKOB continues to educate children through the newly developed program “Cyberbullying/Safe At School.”

Officials from CKOB said, "Due to the increased use of the internet among youth in connecting with local, regional and world issues, research indicates that it also has become a mask to hide behind. Recent studies show that 16.9 percent of middle and high school students identify as a cyberbullying victim and 34 percent of students claimed to have been bullied online at least once in their lifetime. 

"Roughly 60 percent of students who claimed to have been cyberbullied explained that it negatively impacts both their feelings of safety and ability to learn. It was recently reported that a second grade student in Colorado committed suicide due to cyberbullying."

This program is in addition to the “Bullying” program available to youth in first through fourth grades. Both bullying programs address anger management, positive self-esteem, sucide prevention, body image, eating disorders and effecitive communication, among other sensitive issues, through the "unique and non threating medium of pupperty." 

Due to the number of requests in 2017, CKOB developed, in corporation with the Concerned Kids of Toronto, Canada, the “Cyberbullying/Safe at School” program. Last year in its pilot development, CKOB worked with educators, parents and children to ensure the program contained age appropriate information and covered the sensitive issues of bullying online.

"The response last year was overwhelming and again this year, as a featured program primarily for fifth grade, it is becoming one of our most requested programs for students third through fifth grades," according to Ms. Williams. 

CKOB evaluations and surveys indicate that 86 percent of elementary school students report that after seeing the educational program on “Bullying/Cyberbullying” they were more likely to stand up for a student who is being bullied and 75 percent said they were more likely to talk to a grown up if they were being bullied.

“We are listening to the needs of the children and families in our community and providing awareness and prevention education to meet those needs. Bullying is a serious issue. Just this week our office received an email from a local guidance counselor requesting our cyberbulling program and stating it was 100 percent needed in their school,” said CKOB Executive Director Kelly Williams. 

“We are fortunate to have an educational program, unique in many ways, that is able to provide information to children about what bullying is and the consequences of being a bully and being bullied, as well as how to communicate more effectively with adults and caregivers to receive help.” 

CKOB offers bullying programs to first, fourth and fifth grade students in 16 counties free of charge in Southeast Tennessee, North Georgia, and Alabama. It is through individual donations, corporate sponsorships, grants and fundraising events, that all programs are available to schools, both public and private, in the service area. Ms. Williams said that despite unexpected funding cuts and changes in grant funding requirements, there was a 7 percent increase in the number of requests overall for CKOB services. 

“This was a record year for us,” said Ms. Williams, “having performed 500 educational programs, serving over 64,000 children and adults in our area, and that is despite funding cuts which have been severe. We hope to be able to continue the volumun of our services this year through continued and new partnerships throughout our service area.”

CKOB puppeteers are nationally trained Bunraku artists holding degrees in various disciplines. CKOB is one of the few Kids on the Block troupes licensed to perform all 45 of the national programs available to troupes throughout the country and have developed five new programs, including: “Cyberbullying,” “Financial Literacy,” “How Do I Look,” “Autism,” and “Vehicle Safety,”

For more information on CKOB or to schedule an educational program, visit www.kidsontheblock.net or call 423-757-5259.

Puppet kids Brenda and Jason with kids
Puppet kids Brenda and Jason with kids

Chattanooga State Veterans Luncheon Welcomes 87

Girl Scouts Of The Southern Appalachians To Hold Free STEM Workshops At Chattanooga State Community College

Signal Mountain High Threads Of Care Chapter Collects Coats


In observance of Veterans Day, Chattanooga State Community College honored 87 veteran students, faculty and staff with a luncheon in gratitude for their service to our country on Monday. ... (click for more)

The United States STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) gap is widening each year. In an article published by U.S. News and World Report in August 2018, statistics were cited that ... (click for more)

Signal Mountain High School students Caroline Cornett, Emily Holt and Sydney Houck are hosting a winter coat drive to benefit needy teens through an organization called Threads of Care. Threads ... (click for more)


Student Scene

Chattanooga State Veterans Luncheon Welcomes 87

In observance of Veterans Day, Chattanooga State Community College honored 87 veteran students, faculty and staff with a luncheon in gratitude for their service to our country on Monday. At the end of World War I, Armistice Day was commemorated on Nov. 11, 1918, at the eleventh hour on the eleventh day of the eleventh month. This year marks the 100-year anniversary of this ... (click for more)

Girl Scouts Of The Southern Appalachians To Hold Free STEM Workshops At Chattanooga State Community College

The United States STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) gap is widening each year. In an article published by U.S. News and World Report in August 2018, statistics were cited that projected the STEM gap in manufacturing alone would lead to 2 million unfilled jobs by 2025. Together, Girl Scouts of the Southern Appalachians (GSCSA) and Chattanooga State Community College ... (click for more)

Breaking News

County Putting $10 Million Toward New Shelter For Humane Educational Society

County officials are committing $10 million toward a new shelter for the Humane Educational Society (HES). Only Commissioner Tim Boyd spoke against the allocation at a commission meeting on Wednesday. He said a more urgent need was a $5 million training center for police, fire and emergency workers. County Finance Director Albert Kiser said the county came up with a total ... (click for more)

Grundy County Deputy Charged With Voluntary Manslaughter In Chase Shooting Death

An officer-involved shooting investigation in Grundy County by special agents with the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation has resulted in the indictment of a deputy, charged with voluntary manslaughter. At the request of 12 th District Attorney General Michael Taylor, on Dec. 24, 2017, TBI special agents responded to an officer-involved shooting that occurred around 10:30 p.m. ... (click for more)

Opinion

County Commissioners, Stop Pandering And Lead

There is no shortage of public need in Hamilton County, and only a limited amount of revenue and capital bond issues. I cannot admire or appreciate an elected Hamilton County Commission that leads by warm and fuzzy kitty emotions over real and tangible needs. As Commissioner Tim Boyd correctly stated, there is immediate and emergent need for police and fire training facilities. ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Lamar Rants

Being a child of the South, I’ve marveled at our funny sayings for all of my life. I’ve been at a football game and heard a disgruntled fan in the stands say of his team’s quarterback, “That boy couldn’t play dead in a cowboy movie.” I’ve been at the Sunday supper table and heard, “I’m of a mind each one of his sermons is better than the next.” And I’ve sat in a Saturday morning ... (click for more)