10 year old girl and friendship problems(6 Posts)
My daughter is 10 and in year 5. Up until this year her friends have mainly been boys but a new boy joined her class who she doesn't like that much and he became friendly with her best friend. As a result she has moved away from the boys and started to become more friendly with some of the girls. I think however, she doesn't feel that she fits in anywhere in her class. She's a tomboy who loves playing football and doesn't generally get into the politics of friendships.
However, this year has been hard for her. She is well liked, I think mainly because she doesn't get involved with all the issues, but she doesn't have a best friend. Her teachers tell me that she's always playing with people and that she's happy and engaged in school. However, she's in a class with an odd number and I there are times where she's the one who has to make up the 3 or who is picked last for teams. She's clever and sporty so it's not like it's because they don't want her, she's just not anyone's best friend. She has lots of playdates and gets on very well with both the boys and girls on a one to one basis.
However, 2 things have happened this term which have unsettled her. Firstly, the school has decided that there's no playground football this term and therefore the boys have started playing cricket which she doesn't like and she says that she's not good at and then people are mean to her. The girls are keen on skipping which she's also not keen on and she had a bit of a falling out with one of her girl friends over this girl excluding her from a game. The teacher addressed this and I thought it was sorted but DD can hold a grudge and won't let it go. She's not refusing to play with the girls as this girl is "annoying and showing off all the time".
This resulted this morning in her saying that she didn't want to go to school. I went to speak to the teacher who I have been in regular contact with about this all term (poor teacher) and she assured me that she's keeping an eye on it and that DD isn't generally on her own and that when she's the last one to be picked or has to make a 3 it's not all the time but DD takes it to heart.
I simply don't know what to do. I think that there is an element of her being upset about it but I also think that she might be fabricating the severity of the situation for my benefit. e.g she went into the playground at drop off and wandered around on her own. She tells me that she's always on her own yet the playground lady came up to me and asked me if she was ok as she was on her own and she's usually with other people.
She does struggle socially as she's quite tomboyish which is what makes her so special but it can make it hard and I think that she's becoming much more conscious of this and struggling how to find her feet.
I'd really appreciate any advice.
I'd ask the school why they're instituting this silly cricket rule! It sounds like she was doing fine before. Skipping play is very skilled based, can you help her at home? Not if she really finds them silly but she might just be withdrawing because she doesn't know what's expected.
I totally agree, the banning of football is the crux of it. None of the children are happy about it and I've spoken to the school who say that football was causing too many problems and too many children felt excluded by it so they've decided that this term is no football. I'm in town at the moment and I'll pop into Argos and pick up a skipping rope for her. You're right, she's reluctant to skip as she's not confident at it.
It's so upsetting, I've got my stomach in anxious knots wondering what kind of state she's going to come home in
It doesn't sound like the school's insisting on cricket, more banning football. And knowing how wound up ds and his friends can get over football (even little things) I do have a certain sympathy.
When dd1 was in the situation that she tended to be the last picked in her form, (her bf were two boys) the teacher decided that he would pick pairs. It took the pressure off her worrying she wasn't going to get picked. Maybe they could think about that.
it also gives the opportunity for the teacher to mix them up a bit.
I really like the idea of the teacher picking partners, I think I will raise it with them
I can't blame the school for banning football because honestly it causes so many problems and sometimes the staff and non football playing children just need a break (it does effect those not playing too sadly). It can be a complete nightmare in all honesty.
It does sound to me like your daughter is playing this up a bit for some fuss/sympathy at home. If the teacher is assuring you she isn't always last and isn't always the one making a three I would take her word for it and unfortunately your DD will have to accept that this will be her some of the time. It only becomes a problem if it's all the time and it sounds like the teacher is keeping an eye out. You've also had reassurance from the playground assistant that she isn't on her own in the playground so that should give you some confidence that your DD might be exaggerating the situation a little.
That being said please don't think I mean you should brush her off or anything, it does sound like she is taking things to heart a bit. I think the skipping practise idea is good as this will help her find some confidence in this activity. It might also be worth having a chat about how in life we can't always play what we want (e.g the football issue) and that sometimes it's important to let others have a turn at a game they like. You could also chat about what she might like to play that isn't football as that is banned and help her come up with some ways of introducing new games amongst her friends.
I hope she's had a good day today and I'm sure this will settle down in time.
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