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Help needed please - DD (11) and "Playdates";

(23 Posts)
Sonnet Fri 01-Aug-08 10:58:20

Please help me to help my dd1 who is aged 11.

She was always a popular girl with loads of playdates and we always had her friends here. Things started to change at about 8 when she moved from the pre-prep part of school to the Prep part. Friends segregated ino groups with one group not liking another. She has had a rocky coupleof years. I have encouraged her to make other friends and we have had children over/she has been invited over. TBH she never seemed to fit in with these particular girls and often floated between other groups. Towards the later part of this year (yr6) she has been hanging out with another group of girls but not on the "inner sanctum" IYKWIM.

She has been on holiday for 3 weeks now and hasn't contactd or been contacted by anyone. I feel so sad for her.

We live outside a "small" village with no immediate neighbours which dosn't help.

I have spoken to her about contacting a couple of the girls and inviting them over. She is willing to do that but worries about "what they will do"

What do 11 to 12 year olds "do" on playdates - should I take them out somehwere - if so where?

How can I encourage her to widen her circle of friends?

Any help woul be apprecaited

cornsilk Fri 01-Aug-08 11:07:47

Does it bother her though?

Sonnet Fri 01-Aug-08 11:13:28

She says "not really" but I have seen her "social" self confidnece decline rapidly over the last 3 years.

I have also noticed her face when she turns on her phone and no texts - not that she has texted anyone herself....

eandz Fri 01-Aug-08 11:13:51

girls can go shopping

movies ... theres a movie called angus, thongs and perfect snogging... i think it's aimed at girls her age, but i'm not sure. you could rent a couple of movies, girls that age really love chick flicks

maybe a day trip to the closest city?

at home the girls can have a pedicure party? i did this even in uni.

Sonnet Fri 01-Aug-08 11:18:21

Thanks eandz - Shopping - But do I go with them - they are 11?

Movie idea sounds good

Cammelia Fri 01-Aug-08 11:21:51

Sonnet my dd is 11 and when she has friends over they still actively play. Sometimes they do art and crafty things or play outside in the garden. They have been known to watch an occasional dvd but mostly they seem to like talking a lot while doing some home based activity.

Sonnet Fri 01-Aug-08 11:28:49

Thank Cammelia - what sort of art and craft activites do they do, what do they play in the garden?
Thanks

Sonnet Fri 01-Aug-08 11:29:46

Should I suggest she texts someone? - I think she is worried to do so in case they don't respond.

Cammelia Fri 01-Aug-08 11:35:43

For the garden we have various bat and ball type things but quite often they make up their own games using their imaginations, involving lots of talking - I don't get involved

Arts and crafts tends be using various sets from birthday and Christmas presents, could be jewellery making, painting etc - again I leave them to it (after covering the table in newpaper

Nice food and drink goes down well with this age group eg, fizzy elderflower with little cakes etc

Sometimes we do cupcake baking with her friends, they like the decorating bit

Cammelia Fri 01-Aug-08 11:37:11

I would get her to phone her friends and invite them over, I then speak to the mother to confirm arrangements.

My dd doesn't have a mobile phone yet so no texting

batters Fri 01-Aug-08 11:42:04

Agree with cam.

Would have lots of arty stuff available. FIMO is particularly loved by my dd. And my dd aged 10 and her friends also love making up shows which they then present to me . Simple baking good. Dvds can work well but as part of a playdate, not the whole thing IYSWIM.

I wouldn't personally do a shopping playdate - it could turn out expensive and also it doesn't actually give the girls much of a chance to talk does it? Plus I don't think it appropriate for 2 11 year old girls to go shopping on their own and there is no way I would want to be involved in this activity!

I too stay out of the way as much as possible. I have been known (shock!) to retire to the bedroom and iron to stay hidden!

Hope your dd has a lovely time .

batters Fri 01-Aug-08 11:45:34

Movie idea also good , but again doesn't give the girls much time to actually communicate with each other (I know, I'm being picky here!).

robinpud Fri 01-Aug-08 11:47:04

I think it is a funny stage. My dd often takes herself swimming with friends , bike rides, plays on trampoline, does arty stuff, makes own pizzas or popcorn, watches girly dvds. I would maybe have 1 girl at a time so that the dynamic is easier. Are there any organised activities that they could do together? Tennis coachng or similar? Good luck.

eandz Fri 01-Aug-08 11:53:46

oh, i expected you would go with them. you can't leave pre teens alone!

eandz Fri 01-Aug-08 11:57:50

i used to to go the mall with about 4-5 friends at a time (with a mom) and then we'd usually window shop and then buy some sort of snack/lunch item and eat it before we went home.

also, decorating cookies was a lot of fun.

Sonnet Fri 01-Aug-08 12:06:17

Thanks everyone - ( agree eandz can't leave pre-teens alone - wouldn't enjoy it much though!!)
Glad you posted what yours do Cam and Batters - becaus ethat is what I would have thought 11yr olds would do - but DD seems to think she wouldn't know what to do with them , it would be boring etc..
I will try and encourage her to phone some.....

batters Fri 01-Aug-08 13:08:42

sonnet, if your dd isn't keen to phone, why don't you ring up the parents instead?

PrimulaVeris Fri 01-Aug-08 13:16:12

My DD is 12 and hates phoning even her close friends sometimes - she can go shy at the strangest things, so sometimes I end up doing it.

At that age they're still quite happy to 'play', mooch about outside, go on bikes, play with their nintendo games etc.

If you take them out you'll need to keep at arms' length! Swimming trips to the local pool always work well.

batters Fri 01-Aug-08 13:17:06

oh yes swimming a great idea too .

wheresthehamster Fri 01-Aug-08 13:19:42

Ask her if she'd like a sleepover.

Girls to come in nightwear around 7.30 with chocs,dvd and duvet. Do a pizza around 9.30 if required. Let them sleep in the lounge. Pick up 10.30. (Remove phone so no £100 prank calls bill grin)

wheresthehamster Fri 01-Aug-08 13:20:35

10.30 am that should mean!

Sonnet Fri 01-Aug-08 16:10:24

Thanks everyone.
She has phoned and left answerphone message for one friend
TBH I think she has lost her confidence and feels they won't want to come over and then she worries about what they will do. I think she needs a bit of structure to make the day go well
Swimming is a fab idea

I alsop feel a bit on edge about phoning - but I will take a deep breath and do it for her

batters Fri 01-Aug-08 16:58:36

good luck, sonnet, let us know how it goes.

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