social-emotional-learning-teaching-students-to-make-friends

Teaching Students to Make Friends

Friendships are important for the social and emotional development of a child. With kids spending most of their time in schools, they form most of their friendships there too. However, it is not easy for all kids; some find it challenging to make friends. If not addressed in time, the problem can snowball and result in lonely, socially awkward and emotionally underdeveloped children. Schools can help these students by adopting programs like SEL Adventures in their classrooms. Here are the skills a student needs to learn to form rewarding friendships.

Finding their people

Students should be able to identify individuals who can become their good friends. These are their peers who see them as equals, accept them for who they are, and have similar interests to them. Parents, teachers, or even the children themselves should not forcibly try to fit into a friendship for other superficial reasons.

Better Non-Verbal Communication

Non-verbal cues are crucial. The child should be taught to have an approachable and welcoming demeanor. These include smiling, maintaining eye contact, standing straight, and more.

Taking Initiative

Encourage the child to take the initiative and take the first step towards friendship. They can ask a prospective friend to sit at their table for lunch, join a game they play, or invite them to other activities.

Showing Interest & Sharing

Teach the child to be a good listener. While they should talk about themselves, they should also show interest in the life of their new friend. This makes the other person feel valued and gives them an avenue to share their emotions.

Becoming Invested

It is difficult for some kids to celebrate the achievements of their contemporaries. But, guide students to feel happy about the accomplishment of a friend. Celebrating their friend’s achievements makes the bond stronger and sets a foundation for the support system that friendship eventually becomes.

Empathize

A bond like friendship also requires students to put themselves in their friend’s shoes and understand what they are going through and how they can help. It can be challenging for many to empathize, but it is a skill that can be acquired over time.

Resolving Conflicts

It is easy to run from problems. But, students should learn how to face difficulties in their friendships and find an amicable solution that saves the relationship and makes it stronger. Thinking of different ways to resolve problems can prove to be a highly useful life skill for students later in life too.

Being Kind

It is easy to find faults in another person, but being kind requires strength. Once students learn how to empathize and resolve conflicts, kindness follows. But, it can also be learnt by practicing. Students can help their parents do house chores without asking, put out water for animals, or something else.

Teach them Well

Friendships help students to become socially and emotionally intelligent. SEL Adventures assists the school in teaching students the necessary skills to make friends through classroom instructions, a gamified learning experience, and a performance tracker. SEL Adventures helps schools to coach students to become fully-formed and functioning individuals who go on to live a fulfilling life and become an asset to the community.

Related:

Behavior Management Platform, SEL Adventures Platform, social emotional learning