Kids are always learning through party, play and friendships, which makes them grow and develop into healthy adults with diverse relationships. This is obvious, right? Right…but sometimes there are ways to encourage those children who are struggling with maintaining regular peer to peer relationships, which is why I have decided to put together some fantastic ideas for you the caring parent to get them integrated with their community and ideally thrive among their friends.
- Tips to get them started and ways you can encourage
- Sharing, caring and acts of kindness
Every heard the expression “sharing is caring”? Well, this aphorism is obvious but often underrated, which is why it’s first of the list. Sometimes the house rules can be different from the ones at school and this is normal, but there is emphasis on sharing, caring for animals and showing kindness through planned activities, so try doing similar at home.
- Don’t blame or shame
This is crucial for healthy relationships and no one likes someone who points out the faults of others, especially if it is to deflect from their own shortcomings. Make sure to take share the value of taking responsibility and always try to explain that mistakes are ok as long as you try to avoid them next time round. This will help children be less focused on fault finding in others, lessen the chance of them bullying others and be a thoughtful, kind and honest person.
- Get them playing the same games and developing interests together
Some children like outdoors and others the indoors, some like rough and tumble, while others prefer delicate craft and artsy. Appreciating diversity is important and restricting their preference is never good, especially without justification, which is why finding opportunities to get each differing child’s play type to merge into a system of mutual appreciation for the others kind of play activities. This is harder than it sounds, but ideally this comes with getting involved yourself and making each activity an important event, until they lead the way themselves.
- Make or create a gift for each other
This is a fantastic opportunity to get them to show the virtue generosity and something we are sometimes lacking as adults, especially with so many opportunities to that often get missed. The act of giving and the practice of appreciation with help foster positive attitudes in the children, so they become positive people as they develop.
- Team work appreciation with praise
Kids will play together for hours if left to it and sometimes this can be healthy time together with virtues and healthy dynamics of play being displayed, while other times less so. The times where they are struggling to communicate and play in a good manner is where the parent should step in and oversee. The approach I often take is before this happens to be close by and praise whenever they are showing good behavior and attitudes to each other. For example, when one passes something to the other then I would praise and say, “that is very kind or thoughtful”, which helps them associate kind gestures with praise. This will encourage them to attach to a pattern of thought, due to its valued response.