Friendship is very important for children. Especially for expat and international children who have to learn to make new friends quickly.
See our five tips on helping your child to navigate the friendship maze:
- Encourage confidence
Making new friends can be hard when everyone else already has their own cliques or friendship groups. Encourage your child to approach new people positively- smiling and being open to different personalities and ideas.
- Joining in
Encourage your child to join school clubs and activities that he or she is interested in. Going to choir or French club will enable him or her to meet other kids with things in common.
- Detecting the cliques
Explain about the cliques and groups to your child- little children may find these hard to understand. Encourage your child to look for friendships outside existing cliques.
- Knock-backs are normal
Sometimes your child’s overtures may be rebuffed. It is important to reassure your child that this is normal- not everyone we want to be friends with wants to be friends with us. Inspire your child to be themselves and celebrate who are they are.
- Celebrate new friends
Encourage your child to enjoy his or her new friends- invite them for supper, organise cinema trips and country walks.
Friendship is one of life’s great gifts and should be enjoyed to the full. You can reassure your child that expat and international kids who move frequently, often develop a great talent for making friends easily. This is a valuable skill which will serve them well throughout their life.