School today is much more different than what it used to be for us. Although the core concept of education alongside all round development remains intact, the variables keep changing with time. Especially, with all new activities and interests to cater to, children find it difficult to make friends with their hectic schedules.
They keep moving from academics to non-academics which include multiple activities like music and sports and others. This everyday situation leaves them with no or negligible time to go out and socialize more. The remaining amount of their time is mostly consumed by the screens of gadgets.
Besides their schedules, oftentimes children avoid or are unable to make friends due to several underlying causes such as constant relocation to new cities, low self-esteem, shyness, inability to communicate effectively, and more. However, the good news is that regardless of their busyness or intangible difficulties for making friends, you can step in as a rescue.
Now, we know that there’s a whole belief as to why parents shouldn’t involve themselves amongst children but hear us out. We ain’t suggesting that. We’re simply highlighting the fact that the way parents act and teach their children can indeed help them to make friends at school.
The importance of friendship can barely be summed up in a few words. For children, not only do friendships help them grow with an additional sheen of confidence, but also nurtures several social skills like cooperation, empathy, emotional intelligence, effective communication and much more. These skills, when developed from an early age, help them evolve as better individuals tomorrow.
Today, most children are introverted with a shy and reluctant nature which restricts them from making friends. It is completely natural. At a tender age, they often look up to your warmth and comfort when they seek the need of friends. However, you cannot certainly be your child’s only friend throughout. If that’s the case then the reason behind needs serious amendments.
As a parent, if you’re concerned about how to help your child make friends in school, below are some tried and tested ways that may be of great help. However, we warn you in advance to be patient and to avoid being pushy at all times. Baby steps and slowly, you’ll start to see the changes!
The following are 5 ways that answer your question of how to help your child make friends at school.
The first and foremost thing to start with is to pay attention to your child’s competence at social skills. You might want to take a surprise trip down to your kid’s school one day and observe how he/she interacts with others. You may find that your child is having a hard time making friends at school because he/she is shy or uncomfortable. But, does your child behave the same way at home? Once you’ve analysed their behaviour, you may want to discuss your observation with your child.
Make A Checklist of Attributes
Now that you’ve observed your child in a social setting, you know certain things about their behaviour. For instance, whether they are a conversation starter or a follower, with what age group or kinds of people they’re comfortable with, etc.
In order to be good at making friends, your child must know how to strike a conversation without experiencing anxiety or the fear of speaking in public. It is likely that these are the only factors that are keeping your child from engaging with others. Try and help them develop the skill to become conversation starters. You can do that by simply pointing out that this is a way of starting a conversation when you regularly do so.
Become A Role Model
Regardless of what you tell your child to do, it is highly unlikely for them to follow if you don’t model the same behaviour. We’re all aware of how quickly children learn things simply by copying elders around. Modeling the right behaviour to help make friends at school is no different.
You must know that everytime you’re talking to a stranger, a neighbour, a relative or even to them, your child is subconsciously yet closely observing every action of yours. From the way you talk to what languages you use, how you greet and treat others, everything! Thus, make sure to show them what they should do too.
Start from Home
If your child is experiencing hesitation in making friends at school, it is likely that they’ll also find it difficult at home. Thus, the best way to begin is to start from home. You can begin with starting engaging conversations yourself. Once you’ve observed a certain level of engagement and progress from your child’s end, you may want to invite their classmates over. If that seems like a big step, you may invite kids from your society. This way, they’ll also learn to make friendships beyond schooling hours.
Regardless of how shy or introverted your child is, one thing you should avoid at all costs is to compare them with other kids. This will only push them back to being more introverted. You must understand that not everyone has the same personality traits. What we’re aiming at with this article is to help them become more amiable and not alter their whole personality. Talk to your little champ! Listen and understand.