Helping Your Kindergartener Make Friends
Kindergarten is a huge step for children, full of excitement and, for many, anxiety. Kids want to make friends right away, and as a parent, you'd hate to hear that your child is having trouble or being left out. Know that kindergarteners having trouble making friends is extremely common. You just need to help your kid along! Learn what to do to strike the delicate balance between doing everything for your child and letting her learn to do it for herself.
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By Lily Jones
When your child is having trouble making friends, you need to walk a thin line between supporting your child and taking too much control. You want to be hands-on, but you should also provide the tools for your kid to make friends on her own. Learn how to help your kindergartener develop immediate friendships and social skills that will be invaluable in the future!
Refer to Classmates as ‘Friends’
Small children take words very seriously. Instead of saying, "Which child do you sit next to?" ask, "Which friend do you sit next to?" This may seem awkward at first, but in time your child will pick up on the underlying message that all her classmates are potential friends.
Find After-School Activities
Set up Playdates
Learn Classmates’ Names
Be Social Outside of School
Talk to Your Child's Teacher
Be Supportive … and Patient
Make sure your child knows you're always there to help, but don't force her to talk, and don't make a big deal out of it. Casually check in to assess how her relationships are developing. Building friendships may take a while, but hopefully they will last a lifetime!
Does your kid have a case of the kindergarten jitters? Learn how to address the anxiety that often comes with this big step!