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how to have a great play visit?

(5 Posts)
utahforever Tue 26-Jul-11 13:56:33

I currently have 2 manic 8 year olds running around my lounge.

I'm trying to help my ds improve his social skills, by inviting other class children over. I'm finding this very hard, as I don't know how much to be around/intervene.

Any tips?

He gets on with the other kids at school, but hasn't really made a 'best friend' type of connection.

He had a best friend, but she left earlier this year after being together since reception. This will hopefully be good for him, as they were very exclusive and never mixed with the other kids - hence him being on the periphery now.

He's a lovely boy, but very opinionated and puppy dog eager. Hopefully this visit will go well smile

curiouscat Tue 26-Jul-11 20:57:52

My eldest is a son and he never really made exclusive friends. Often boys' friendships are activity led, eg they like x because they play football/chess etc together. He's 13 and has various close friends but none are best.

I think you're doing the right thing having other children over, but don't feel bad if it's not reciprocated or whatever, I think parents have enough pressure without remembering who's been where always. For 8 year old boys I would watch them all the time, unless you want to be replacing sofa cushions they've pulled off or be tidying up for hours afterwards. Outdoors is always best if possible - or take them swimming will knacker them.

My playdates would be playground or make some cakes or drawing something with them (so they take some home with them), then the simplest supper eg pizza/pasta then pickup. 2 hours max if you can get away with it!

Hope this helps, sorry it's too late for today's play visit. Good luck but really social skills will come as the child matures and can't be forced.

Takver Tue 26-Jul-11 22:01:55

I don't know if this is just my dd, but I've found that repeated visits are very much the easiest (after the early ones!), especially if there has initially been a reason that child X has to come every week (or whenever).

There are a couple of children where I'm friends with their parents, and I've offered to have them come home in term time once a week - in one case before a club (we live in town very near to school, whereas a lot of dd's classmates are from further out) - in the other, until an older sibling gets home on the 2ndary school bus.

After a few weeks of short visits like this (basically walk home, snack, 20 mins to play then out to the club/home with sibling) they've got in the way of playing together in our house, and now I'm happy for them to come round for the day & know they'll just get on with it. That does quite often include manically running around the sitting room, mind you grin

Takver Tue 26-Jul-11 22:02:37

(my dd is 9, btw, so a similar age)

utahforever Wed 27-Jul-11 11:32:26

Thanks for your replies.

Well it went quite well, although I probably should have been loitering in the room and not outside it !

I shall try and keep it shorter next time though - this was over 3 hours and I could start to see signs of it being too long. I shall make sure it is outdoors next time as well.

I just feel a bit silly really, as I want him to have friends around/play with - but I find that I worry alot about whether they will like him/play with him or it goes so badly that he will never have friends at school again.

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