Making Friends

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Making and retaining relationships is a skill important to adults and children alike. We can help our children learn these important skills by modelling, problem-solving and role-playing. What kind of skills are we talking about? Here are four examples to get you started:

1.  Breaking the ice and initiating contact

  • My name is John, I love to play soccer. What is your favourite sport? Would you like to play ball together? (Greeting, offering information, asking for information and inviting participation)


2.  Communicating effectively

  • I’m glad you like to play baseball, I also think it’s a lot of fun! (Finding common ground)


3.  Acting positively

  • Thank you very much for passing me the ball! (Showing appreciation)


4.  Managing Conflict

  • I am playing with this right now, but if you let me finish playing for five more minutes then you can have it. (Compromise)


We need to be aware of our children’s temperament and not be disapproving whether they are shy or highly spirited. We should also be conscious that a child’s age and level of development could translate to different types of interactions and a child’s ability to make friends.