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how to help 5 year old make friends?

(14 Posts)
krisskross Sat 20-Oct-12 13:01:11

DS just turned 5 and recently began reception class.

He is slowly settling in, but still finds it hard to go in in the morning and is tired but okay when he comes out. He loves his teacher but finds the TA a bit overwhelming.

He is quite shy with children his age (not with adults or babies oddly) and finds it hard to make friends. I am not sure he is even interested in making friends. He knows one boy at school but he is in the other class. At nursery, after two terms he made tow female friends and no other boy friends, but when he comes out of his shell with children he is a giddy chatterbox who loves fun, it just takes a long time to happen.

What can i do to help? I am planning to meet with a couple of mums and their children over half term.

Also- i am quite socialble and make a point of chatting to other mums and children so he sees me making friends.

Any advice please?

VolumeOfACone Sat 20-Oct-12 13:27:12

Will watch with interest. No advice I'm afraid, but my DD also finds it very very hard to make friends. She never did at nursery, and hasn't at school so far.

With children I have introduced her to she's fine. But without me to facilitate the relationship, she just doesn't seem to know what to do.
I do worry about it. sad

krisskross Sat 20-Oct-12 13:44:00

me too. And thanks for responding. the odd thing is (and i am sure its the same with your DD) is that he is a lovely boy and he loves fun in groups, when he has (a long) time to get used to it. JUst wish i could help him. Some children seem to get the 'rules of engagement' easier than others.

advice other mums please!!!

VolumeOfACone Sat 20-Oct-12 14:20:35

Mmm, yes, it's those unwritten rules.

I'm planning to ask the teachers for advice about it at parents evening- which is soon, after half term.

Inneedofbrandy Sat 20-Oct-12 14:24:52

I used to worry about this. You can ask the teacher to give them a buddy to sit with and have lunch with. They usually end up best friends that way. It all does work out reception they are still very young, play dates are great also of you walk home with other mums so they can walk together.

krisskross Sat 20-Oct-12 16:24:49

thanks both. i did meet with his teacher this week and they are aware of it, but did not suggest a buddy in class. i can ask next week perhaps. they asked me to arrange play dates but did not suggest anything they could do in class- which seems a bit surprising on reflection.

VerityClinch Sat 20-Oct-12 16:31:48

He sounds like I was at school. Takes me a long time to warm to people, I'm happy in my own company, don't have a massive social circle.

I was labelled "shy" which I hated. I wasn't at all shy with people I liked and felt comfy with. I sang in the church choir at his age and often sang solo. No shy child would do that! By the time I was 13 I was Tallulah in Bugsy Malone and loved it (but didn't want to go to the "after show" celebrations because it would mean socialising and talking to lots of people and polite small talk etc)

as an adult, nothing has changed, i can turn on the charm and be the life and soul when occasion (or duty) demands it, but that's a skill to be learnt - bit much to expect from a five year old smile

I'd say, encourage him to socialise but understand it might take a lot more out of him than you, especially if you're one of those people who gains energy and ideas from bouncing off others, encourage his confidence but don't push him too hard.

krisskross Sat 20-Oct-12 16:36:50

thanks verity. i just want him to fit in and i think sometimes it mystifies him with strangers!!

VerySmallSqueak Sat 20-Oct-12 16:44:54

I think sometimes with our kids,things that worry us,do not worry them.

As you have said he seems ok and doesn't seem that interested in making friends.

I would give him a chance to find his own way if he's happy.He may make loads and loads of casual acquaintances or take a very long time to make a few,but very close,friends.

Just ask him what he did at playtime and who he played with,casually.Monitor if he seems to be happy.And don't worry,it's very early days,is my advice.

krisskross Sat 20-Oct-12 20:34:46

thanks very- sounds sensible!

Tgger Sat 20-Oct-12 21:28:38

Give him time. Friendships are very fluid at this age. I think the pp has sound advice. Role model being sociable/having friends, encourage friendships if they come up, but don't worry if they don't, he's still very young.

Lonecatwithkitten Sun 21-Oct-12 10:14:35

Is it worth asking the teacher which child seems to be likely to develop a friendship with your DS so that you could maybe try a playdate to see if one to one interaction helps this friendship to flourish.
I say this as the Mum of the bubbly confident child (who also is very kind hearted) who was suggested as being a suitable friend for several quieter shyer children. I allowed DD to go on all these initial playdates some it was very clear that the friendship would not work others she is still friends with now.
DD became very close friends with one such girl and always now makes sure at concerts etc. she stands next to her (even in year 4) and if the lip wobbles DD reaches her hand discretely across and gives a little squeeze.
This has in turned helped my DD to not be too overly bubbly and confident that she leaves some people out and she also is very sensitive too and hates exclusion in the playground.

crazygracieuk Sun 21-Oct-12 22:20:52

Our school has a nurture group for Reception children who needed help with building social confidence. My ds2 (August born) was in this group for the first term and the teacher said that it really helped.

krisskross Sun 21-Oct-12 22:23:27

thanks crazy- sounds sensible but dont think they do anything similar. will check tmw.

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