As a parent it is not easy to find out that our child is being excluded by friends. It tugs at our heartstrings! But please try not to take it personally or get too upset at this point. Children can perceive things one way while the adults see it another. On the other hand, you love your child and don't want to see this situation escalate into bullying.
The next time your son comes home and states that the other kids did not want to play with him, suggest that he speak up to the kids and tell them that he wants to play with them. Help him to not feel like a victim, but that he can use his words to express what he wants.
Since this situation is taking place on the playground, chances are there is not the same amount of supervision that there is in the classroom. Talk to his teacher and ask if she has noticed any problems in the classroom. She can be on alert during recess or talk with the recess supervisor to watch for problems and to encourage the kids to include your son. If it continues to be a problem and it develops into a chronic problem, you should speak with the school counselor or talk with the principal.
If you would like to talk with a counselor about this or any other parenting issue, please call our toll-free hotline at: 1-800-448-3000, or e-mail us at: firstname.lastname@example.org You will also find more information on our website: www.parenting.org
Take care, and best to you and your son!
Cynthia, Crisis Counselor
Boys Town National Hotline
Maybe your child is insisting on playing a game that the other kids don't enjoy. Try to help him develop a dialogue that he can use with other children at the playground. Help him develop a voice while teaching him to be accommodating of others. Good luck!
I also have a second grader so I understand how heartbreaking it is to deal with your son’s current situation at school.
My son has a delay in social and language development. So making friends and maintaining friendship has always been a challenge for him. Since my son started kindergarten, I’ve also been concerned about him not having friends in school and having no one to play with during recess. At the beginning of the each school year, I make a point of going up to the teacher and tell him/her about my son’s weaknesses. The teacher usually responds by putting my son in the same table with the most talkative and popular kids. During many group activities, my son is always put into the more sociable group. These are the kids that my son usually ends up playing with during recess.
I feel that your son is playing with the wrong group of boys who already “formed” their own group and are not acceptance of newcomers. I would try to talk to the teacher and see if the teacher can introduce your son to another group of boys that he can play better with. Ask the teacher which child is more easy going in your son’s class and ask if it’s okay to pair your son up with that child. There are usually many activities in class that require the teacher to put kids into group or partner, ask if it’s okay to put your child with the more friendly kids. Also, does your son have a line partner? A good line partner can be the best buddy. Ask the teacher to implement or change your son’s line partner if he doesn’t have one that is a good friend.
Lastly, lunch is an extremely social event in school for kids. Ask your child what is the “in” thing to do and do it accordingly as this where and how he makes more friends. Last year, at my son’s school, the “in” thing was eating school lunch in the cafeteria. This year, it’s bringing your own lunch and eat it in the yard. The yard now is the place to “show off” what your mom packs for you and to trade snacks.