Tips to Encourage Children to Make Friends

Many children make-friends easily. But for some, this is a daunting task!

In our human lives, relationships and friendship have a lasting impact. Hence, we must teach our kids how to succeed in building these relational skills.

Friendship is important for kids as:

  • It teaches the child life skills
  • Inculcates skills to collaborate
  • Reduces stress levels
  • Promotes coping skills
  • Develops confidence and a positive self-image


Let’s break down this information into some easy parenting tips that can help your child to make friends

Let’s get started!


(1) Meetups

During the pandemic, it may not be very easy for you to arrange for meetups. However, it is still possible to help the child interact with other kids with similar interests. You can join a couple of groups (such as homeschooling groups or through social media) and look for families with similar requirements. Set aside a time of the week like ‘Sunday’ and arrange opportunities such as in-person or virtual conversations. Let the child have positive conversations with others. And encourage him/her to open up for friendship.

Never miss real stories from India's women.

Register Now

(2)Clear conversations and selection of words

Teach your toddlers to use the right words to initiate positive conversations. Cite examples of how they should put their thoughts across to others to make sure that they do not hurt the listener.

For instance, tell them the use of correct words to offer help such as ‘What can I help you with?’, ‘Can I be of any help for you?’, ‘Let me know if you need my help to sort this out’ etc.  And encourage the use of magical words like ‘thank you’ ‘sorry’ and ‘please etc. in everyday interactions.

Let your child understand how to handle unpleasant or unexpected situations such as quarrels with friends etc. For example, it is always better to clarify, seek clarity or probe the real reason behind the argument. Encourage children to apologize if he/she has done something wrong. And tell the child how to put across his/her point politely even if he/she is not at fault.  Mindful use of words will reduce the chances of ambiguity and misunderstandings in life. In addition, it will also help to sort any issues and help to sustain long-term friendships. Help your child in developing these skills. You can also make him/her learn English online to strengthen his/her communication.

(3) Topics for discussions with dos and don’ts

Another help that your child might need can be about the topics of discussion. Help your child with the right ways of initiating conversations, greeting, introduction, etc. Give a couple of ideas like common interests, hobbies, favorite books, music genre, subjects, etc. kids often do not know the importance of a balanced conversation. As a result, they either end up dominating the talks or simply remain quiet as a listener.

Teach your child how to avoid self-praise, boastful language. And showcase the importance of verbal and non-clues as an integral part of a healthy conversation. If your kids have crossed the elementary stages of schooling, tell them about the importance of tone, intonation, stressing, and pausing as well. It will add value to their conversations. And they will be able to convey their thoughts more effectively to others.

Some kids find it difficult to share much about themselves. Help them by using questioning techniques. And share examples of how to participate in discussions and answer questions effectively.

(4) Model the right behavior

As adults, we want our kids to develop as thriving adults. But not all of us work on our own social skills to set the right example. While you encourage the child to make new friends and interact with peers, teach them about the positive behavior techniques through your own example. Make sure you exhibit the right behavior with others in your child’s presence.

Because your child will repeat the same at some point in time. Show them how you handle people and situations positively without any sharp reactions. And let them know the value of maintaining good relationships despite some striking individual differences.

(5) Supportive Activities

Activities that allow children to work in groups can be a good head start for them. Let your child be a part of a group and foster a sense of cooperation instead of competition. Keep a track of such activities arranged by the school teachers. And arrange extra ones from your side. You can also add immersive experiences through the power of gamification in education. Select a couple of online resources and help the child make the most of these supportive activities. Kids feel comfortable with the known people around them. So create groups with their friends, and encourage talks through collaborative activities.

Your behavior with others should also help your kids to understand how to handle defeats and disagreements with grace. Because this will make the child humble and he/she will learn how to manage relationships through a balanced approach.

(6) Stay realistic in your approach

Many parents push their children hard to develop good social skills to deal with social anxiety. However, they fail to stay realistic in their approach. And miss the actual purpose of supporting their child’s social development. Make sure you do not rush if your child is slow in making friends. Keep supporting the child and refrain from any comparisons with other kids of his/her age group.

Remember that all kids are different and unique beings. And not all rules can be applied to all kids at the same time. Your shy kid will also learn how to make friends if you use the right strategies and stay patient. But if you put too much pressure on the child he/she will feel even more uncomfortable while interacting with others.

Final Thoughts

Kids get numerous opportunities to make friends at school or socialize even while being at home. It’s just about using these opportunities in the best possible manner and providing the necessary handholding.

Stay positive about your efforts and help your preschooler to enjoy flourishing adulthood in the years to come!

Thanks for Reading!


About the Author

2 Posts | 398 Views

Stay updated with our Weekly Newsletter or Daily Summary - or both!

All Categories