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Friendship where most parents feel this would come naturally to your child is not the case. Learning to be friendly is a character trait/behavior needing to be taught. As always, parents

need to be consciously aware to model healthy relationships in front of their child/children. Try to show positive friendships and their interaction with their friends. Children watch and

that is how they learn.

Teach young toddlers and pre-schoolers by introducing your child to children of the same

age group and finding their common interest. Find playgroups, who are interests or friends who have children of the same age. This will be where a child learns to socialize, learn how to play together, and find things in common with another child. Usually, the first challenge of learning is how to share, interact with other child/children and establish being friendly.

As your child/children grow and begin to develop skills for friendships they become aware of another's perspectives. This also gives you, the parent, an opportunity to speak with your child about anotherhow they feel in certain situations when they are hurt, feeling left out, good, included or even bullied by an other child who they thought was their friend. Talk to your child and

ask how a friend should make them feel, so they can recognize what is friendly and what is not a healthy friendship. Offer your definition of what a friend is and listen to their

response on what they believe a friend to be. Inform your child that a friend is someone who

makes you happy and feel good, someone you can rely on and includes you. This will help your child establish healthy friendships and how you treat your friend is how your friend should treat you.

A. Here are some practicing teaching tool ideas on how to be friendly:

*Taking Turns

*Offering encouragement



*Being patient

*Including others

Choose a trait at a time to focus on, and discuss its importance in having

friends with these character traits/qualities.

B. Read books to your child/children that are about friends and being a

good friend. There are several books out there for teaching friendships.

C. Take out photos of your childhood friends and share stories with your children.

D. Have your child/children color a picture, make a card, a fun craft like a friendship

bracelet and share with their friend.

Making memories with a friend can establish friendships for a lifetime.

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