Top
Ready to Launch Your Biz?

Get this month's Launch Your Biz Freebie

Childhood Friendships | Tallahassee Family Photographer

Friendships are an important part of a child’s development. When children are paired with others, they share bonds and learn new experiences. In the fall 2015 issue of American Journal of Play, scholar Thomas Hendricks explained the importance of relationships in his Play as Experience article: “During play time, behaviors like personal needs, urges, desires, and understandings are expressed.” Hendricks added that when child friendships develop, “emotional skill sets are sharpened.” Read on for tips on fostering Tallahassee Friendships that could last a lifetime for your children, and even yourself!

Tallahassee Family Photographer

Making friends is not an easy task for all children, however. Many kids do not have a built-in social network in their lives. When children are small, friendship fostering becomes the responsibility of the parents. Three methods have been helpful in developing positive companions for my two kids. My successful strategies include observing in their classrooms, reaching out to other parents, and arranging a public meet-up or time-limited home play dates.

OBSERVE IN THE CLASSROOM

At the early start of a new school year, spend an hour volunteering in your child’s classroom. Talk to the teacher about selecting a good time to come in for a visit. My oldest daughter has a birthday in October so I typically ask if I can bring in an educational game along with treats for the students around her birth date. I observe and assist in a fun activity. I am amazed at what I witness in that short duration – monitoring the good listeners versus those who are not following directions or who may be acting out. I also notice the children who are being sweet or attentive to my daughter. After sixty minutes of classroom time, I’m able to pick out a few students who I think will make potential friends for my child. I also confer with the teacher about the different classroom behaviors, something that has proven to be incredibly insightful. This strategy has worked well in finding pals for my daughter during the past two years.

Tallahassee Family Photographer

REACH OUT TO OTHER PARENTS

After you monitor classroom activities, reach out to the parents of the children who show good friend potential. My child’s teacher was kind enough to pass along my name and contact information to the parents I wanted to meet. One parent sent me a text stating how her daughter really enjoyed playing at recess with mine. That prompted me to ask if she’d like to have a play date. We made arrangements a few weeks later and a budding friendship soon formed among all of us. Another tactic is to seek out friendly folks during school assembly programs or open house events. Talk to other parents and see if a connection occurs. I have experienced great conversation with other moms and dads, even when I didn’t know anyone in the room. After a few exchanges, I hand the other parent my personal card with contact details on it. Or I may ask for the other parent’s information. I say, “Let’s schedule a time for our kids to play,” and I follow up.

ARRANGE A PUBLIC MEET-UP OR A TIME-LIMITED HOME DATE

Parents may be more comfortable meeting in a public space while they first get to know another family. Great options for a meet-up include the park, library, a kid-friendly museum, or an indoor play area with slides. Use this as a way to be a local tourist in your community and discover new locations to explore. When you’re ready or comfortable to open up your home to a play date, make it time-limited to start. Keep in mind the age range and plan around naps or hours when children may be more irritable or hungry. My favorite times are either 10 a.m. to noon or 2 to 4 p.m. so I can avoid planning extra meals. Talk to the other parent and children to learn their habits, preferences or anything notable such as allergies or fears. I stay with my children at least three times before I am willing to leave them alone or drop them off for a visit without my supervision. Determine your own comfort level and safety rules for play dates.

Tallahassee Family Photographer

WORTH THE EFFORT, TIME AND MESS

Even if toy squabbling, crying and messes occur during a play date, remain optimistic about the effort spent on the occasion. Although it involves both time and effort, and often a lot of patience, I am grateful for the memorable moments my children spend with others. They are happy to have friends over and I love hearing their creativity and laughter coming from the next room while I do chores or simply have a little “me” time, always on call of course.

Do not underestimate the value of early friendship fostering. Camaraderie and connection is important at every stage in life. Take steps to develop companions for your children. Well-managed playtime with friends will assist families in the intellectual, emotional and social understanding of the world around them.

Source

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Client Love

I can't thank ... Emily enough for giving me the tools and the courage to take my side hustle from...

Rebecca

Poppie Studios
2019-03-24T10:24:21-04:00

Rebecca

I can't thank ... Emily enough for giving me the tools and the courage to take my side hustle from hobby to full time. I still have a ways to go, but now I have measurable goals and the know-how to see them through. Thank you ... for talking me through my fears, inspiring me to push myself, and leading by example.

The way she captured the natural light and the local scenery really made our pictures distinct. Not only is she...

Kelley

Poppie Studios
2019-03-24T10:31:44-04:00

Kelley

The way she captured the natural light and the local scenery really made our pictures distinct. Not only is she good at what she does, but she’s also hilarious and makes the whole experience fun!

Emily is amazing. She was not only so professional, but just a really fun person to work with. I’m not...

Cheyenne

Poppie Studios
2019-03-24T10:33:20-04:00

Cheyenne

Emily is amazing. She was not only so professional, but just a really fun person to work with. I’m not really the picture taking type, but I never once felt awkward or staged... She really will try and help you and make it as easy as possible to create memories that last. I highly recommend her if you want someone who genuinely cares about your special day.

I came to Emily for help with a website logo and she did an amazing job! Not only was she...

Luke

Poppie Studios
2019-03-24T10:35:00-04:00

Luke

I came to Emily for help with a website logo and she did an amazing job! Not only was she extremely patient with me, but she really made an effort to understand what I was looking for and she went above and beyond to come up with a great logo. I highly recommend her!

Amazing designer. Extremely helpful with all aspects of marketing & Building a strong brand.

Michael

Poppie Studios
2019-03-24T10:35:51-04:00

Michael

Amazing designer. Extremely helpful with all aspects of marketing & Building a strong brand.