My kids have the luxury of going to a small school which offers great adult/pupil ratios and a fantastic learning environment, Unfortunately, one of the downsides of small schools is that pupils have a smaller pool of children to make friends from. When it comes to birthday parties, this makes life for parents fantastically easy. However, when it comes to friendship groups, things are not so easy as if you fall out with your friends, there is not many other places to look for new ones.
All children, especially girls go through phases of being best friends with their classmates one week and then not being best friends the next. With five girls in her year, I have always wondered how the friendship dynamic would work out, although it seems that children in small schools seem to mix more happily with other children from other years, rather than sticking to those in their own year as children in larger schools do. This week eldest has been coming home from school upset as her two best friends seem to have paired up and are leaving her out.
As a parent it's upsetting to hear that your children are not having a happy time at school. Although I well remember having friendship woes at school, I wasn't too phased by it. Eldest is a sensitive little sole and is taking the rejection by her friends quite personally. A bright little button, she finds it hard to deal with childish behaviour and doesn't understand why her friends have suddenly turned on her.
Although reassuring her that they may well be best friends again by next week, and that things will blow over and not to let it get her too upset, I am at a little bit of a loss of how to help her deal with friendship falling outs as she doesn't understand why her friends have suddenly decided to leave her out, (although I have a suspicion that it's because one child didn't like me picking them up on bad behaviour at my house recently).
What do you think? How do you help your children deal with difficulties in friendships in the playground? It's a fact of life that most children will go through this at some point.
Any answers gratefully received!