Take a step

Goals of the exercise: To make participants recognize appropriate and inappropriate behaviors.
Age of the participants: 10+
Number of participants: any
Duration of the exercise: 20 minutes
Materials: A rope or anything that could set a limit or a boundary, sample statements list

Step by step

  1. Discuss the meaning of when something ‘crosses the line’ – this means any inappropriate behaviors, words, tone of voice or actions.
  2. Place the rope on the floor. Ask the participants to line up, side-by-side, with both feet on one side of the rope.
  3. Explain that you will read sample behaviors that the participants might see or hear others do or say. If they think the behavior is ‘wrong’, ask the participants to step over the rope.
  4. Let the participants know that they can make their own choice of what they think crosses the line.
  5. Have the participants go back to their original positions before you read the next example.

Sample statements

  1. Saying, “There’s room at our table. Sit here.”
  2. Saying, “Sorry, this seat is saved and it’s not for you!”
  3. Saying, “I really like the shirt you are wearing.”
  4. Saying, “Wow. Did you really mean to wear that ugly shirt with those horrible pants?”
  5. Saying, “Only my friends can play this game with us.”
  6. Saying, “Sure, everyone can play. You just need to wait your turn.”
  7. Passing a note about a girl or boy in your group.
  8. Helping someone pick up something they have dropped.
  9. Whispering about one of your group mates in the hallway.
  10. Telling an adult that someone called you or another participant mean names.
  11. Laughing at the losing team on sports day.
  12. Laughing at a funny joke a group mate tells.


  • How do you feel when somebody crosses the line?
  • What do you do when somebody crosses the line?
  • What do you do when you cross the line?

Authorship/adaptation or source: BullyingFree NZ Week 2018 Activity Pack

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