Friendships and playing with peers helps children develop skills in negotiating with others, relationship skills, and learning how to lead. However, making friends can seem difficult or scary for some preschoolers. Below are a few ways to help your preschooler make a few friends!
Equip Your Preschooler
Begin by helping your preschooler build the skills needed to be a good friend. Model and practice conversational skills by having thoughtful conversations with your little one. In addition to modeling and practicing conversational skills, model and practice turn taking, sharing, and handling conflict. Games are a great way to practice these skills!
Read Books about Friendship
Pick a few books out that focus on friendship. Choose books that offer examples of a good friend versus a bad friend. Talk about these characteristics with your preschooler.
Know the Classmates
Obtain a list of your preschooler’s classmates. Learn the other student’s names. At the end of the school day, ask your preschooler specific questions about classmates. You will gather information on her classmate’s interests, likes, and dislikes through these questions. You will then use this information to determine who your preschooler may hit it off with or whom she may clash.
Plan a Playdate
Once you have played preschool matchmaker, reach out to the other parent and arrange a playdate outside of school! Consider the location for your playdate and the needs of the children involved. If you use a public location, try to plan for a time when the location is less busy. If your preschooler struggles with identifying social cues or sharing, practice the skills your child struggles with prior to the playdate. Consider putting away any toys your child may not want to share to avoid conflict, if you are hosting the playdate in your home. Set a time limit for the playdate. Preschoolers have a limited attention span and when they get bored with an activity or person they will find ways to end their boredom, which could lead to conflicts with the other child.
Don’t get discouraged if your preschooler doesn’t hit it off with others right away or one friendship ends. Much like your growing preschooler, preschool friendships change from day to day!
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Want to learn more about Kids ‘R’ Kids Learning Academy of Flower Mound located in Flower Mound, Texas? Our mission is to provide secure, nurturing, and educational environments for children ages 6 weeks – 12 years. We help children to bloom into responsible, considerate, and contributing members of society. For more information, give us a call or stop by for a tour! We’d love to get to know you and your family.