I was wondering if anyone had any advice on how to help my 5 yr old who is in reception.
She has recently started to say that she doesn't like school and that no one will play with her in the play ground. She has about 3-4 friends with whom we regularly have playdates (including one who we swap after school childcare with each week) - she plays really well with all of these friends outside school. Other children in the class do talk to her when we bump into them outside school. Although shy to start with and sensitive, she is imaginative, makes up great games and can be very confident when she knows people. On the downside, she has quite strong opinions and is not likely to be very submissive or easy going in playing. She did only know one other girl well when starting school - from nursery - but they weren't great friends and have grown apart again. I have also noticed that first playdates can be a nightmare in non-sharing and arguing but after that she is normally great.
My take on it is that the usual daily squabbles of the playground are upsetting her and that she hasn't yet learnt to either (a) not take offence or (b) not cause offence. But it is obviously really upsetting her and I don't know what to do to help.
Does your school playground have a 'bus stop' for children looking for others to play with? That might be a way of broadening her friendship group. Otherwise, I think it may just be a matter of time and supporting her as she learns about the give-and-take of the playground.
I have no quick fix (I wish!) apart from a)have a word with teacher, as social skills seem to be a real focus in reception and they would want to know dd is getting upset/finding this aspect tricky and b) Our Ds(5) is less robust than his younger sister and gets upset quite quickly and we talk through what would be the sensible thing to do and also what to say. The situation at school might not arise again but it gives him reassurance and confidence, knowing how to respond.