Helping Your Child Make The Right Friends & Build Social Skills
Learning social skills is an important part of your child’s development. As a parent, you want to see your kids not only make friends but make friends that will be good influences and encourage them down the right path. If you have a child who struggles to make friends or tends to spend most of their time alone, you can help. Here at our private school serving Fort Collins and Loveland, we value community and keeping every student engaged. We work hard to ensure the children who attend our school are learning important social skills and building lifelong friends.
If you want to help your child make the right friends and develop important social skills, read on to learn more about what you can do.
Encourage Without Overwhelming
As a parent, you can become so fixated on an idea that your enthusiasm can actually become overwhelming. While you may want to work to encourage your child to make new friends, be careful that you do not overwhelm them. When they make strides in the right direction, pass along an encouraging word.
However, when they are having difficulty making friends or simply don’t express an interest in getting to know any other kids their age, don’t overwhelm them through nagging or judgment.
Take A Look At Your Own Social Skills
Before you start working with your child to develop healthy social skills, ask yourself how well you are leading by example. Do you have good friends who your kids see you interact with? Demonstrating healthy social skills to your kids goes a long way in developing those skills in their own lives.
This is true from even a very young age. Talk to your elementary aged kids about your own friends and how you made those friendships. When they are scared to make new friends, tell stories about the times you were afraid and found good friends in the end.
As we stated above, even your youngest kids in the home will benefit from developing social skills. The earlier you work with your kids to learn how to interact with other kids their age, as well as people of any age, the easier time they will have making friends as they get older.
Young kids usually have a natural ability to make friends through group play and other social activities. Make sure you expose your kids to lots of fun opportunities for practicing social skills. From a very young age talk to them about how to share, how to listen to others, and how to make friends by being kind to others.
Stay In Tune With Your Kid’s Unique Needs
As your kids get older, making friends can become more difficult. For some kids, making friends will always be easy. These social butterflies have vivacious personalities that attract others and allow them endless opportunities for friendships. For some kids though, making friends isn’t that easy. Perhaps your child is shy or marches to the beat of their own drum. Maybe they are truly an introvert and need a lot of time alone to recharge.
Rather than approaching every child with a one-size-fits-all mentality, stay in tune with who they are and help them build social skills that match their unique needs. Don’t pressure your child to become a socialite if that’s not who they are. While you want to ensure they have good friends in their life to help them develop healthy social skills, try to help them find friends that appreciate them for who they are. Keep encouraging them to have a healthy self-esteem so that they can feel confident in their own skin as they reach out to others.
Opt For A Community-Focused School
One of the number one places your child will practice their social skills and make new friends is at school. Opt for a school that focuses on community first and foremost. Smaller classroom sizes and engaged teachers will ensure your child doesn’t slip through the cracks. Here at Resurrection Christian School, we encourage our students to engage with each other and to build lasting, meaningful friendships. To learn more about our private school serving Fort Collins, Loveland, and surrounding towns, schedule a tour today.