In 2004, GLSEN created No Name Calling Week to support educators’ efforts in combating bullying, name calling, and bias in schools. NNCW was based on the characters in the popular book called The Misfits. The book focuses on a group of characters who decide to change their school by running for student council on a “no name-calling platform”. If your school decides to the organize a NNCW campaign, you can register your school on the GLSEN-No Name Calling Week  website.

Because there is a strong correlation between bullying behavior, poor academic performance, and high absenteeism, schools need effective methods of increasing empathy and ally behavior between students (GLSEN). Teaching empathy and upstanding behaviors has been proven to save time on disciplinary issues like fighting, classroom disruptions, guidance interventions, and off task behavior which often disrupt classroom instructional time. Since the majority of bullying incidents often occur in the hallways, the cafeteria, on the bus ramp, or in the locker room, most go unreported. Since school staff cannot always stop every incident of bullying, implementing a No Name Calling Week campaign can change the climate of the school, improve student attitudes, and increase instructional time in class!

Before embarking in the NNCW campaign, observe students’ language and attitudes regarding differences and how these behaviors are addressed by school staff. Next, gather additional student data by distributing the NNCW Student Bullying Survey to students.  One great way to distribute the survey is through math class as a data lesson! Once you examine the attitudes, behaviors, and perceptions of your school, set your goals and objectives for NNCW.

Some goals GLSEN has identified include:

  1. Incidents of name-calling will decrease by ______%.
  2. Students will engage in up-stander behavior by ______% of all name-calling incidents.
  3. All staff and students will use a standard vocabulary and apply a shared sense of expectations in this school.

Objectives identified by GLSEN include:

  1. Students will identify ways that words can be used to hurt or help others.
  2. Students will identify the difference between hurtful and helpful words.
  3. Students will apply “safe” strategies in incidents of name-calling and bullying.
NNCW gives some very simple activities your school can conduct to get out the No Name-Calling message to students and staff.  

  • Have students create and display expressive artwork.
  • Have teachers teach lessons based around no name-calling.
  • Ask teachers to implement a no name-calling policy in the classroom.                                                                       Classroom Activity on Creating a Respectful Classroom           
  • Ask your librarian to display books that deal with bullying and name-calling.
  • Ask coaches and PE teachers to teach sportsmanship like behavior on teams and in the physical education class.
  • Have student leaders order and wear No Name-Calling promotional items from the NNCW.
  • Share information with parents of what to do if their student is being bullied. 
  • Teach staff members how to intervene in bullying situations by using On-the-spot Bullying Intervention. See this excellent video from Conflict Resolution Education in Teacher Education.

  • Teach students how to be safe in bullying situations

Check out these additional resources!

NNCW Activities
NNCW Planning Guide

Anti – Defamation League Video

Learning About Labels HS Lesson Plan

We’re All Different, But Alike HS Lesson Plan
Shirts of Empowerment
Be an Upstander-The Bully Project
The Bully Project-Creating a Caring School Community Handbook
Stomp Out Bullying-How to Be an Upstander
Anti-Bully Peer Facilitator Guide
Upstander Strategies
Anti-Bullying Websites
Resolution of Respect Poster

Feel free to share any ideas you may be implementing in your school!!


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