Healthy relationships and good friends make us happy. These friendships are built over time in families, communities, schools, and even online. Making and growing friendships takes a lot of work, by both parents and children, but they can be one of the most rewarding experiences in a child’s life.
Making friends (and keeping them) is an important life skill for us all. In this article, you will find three ways to help teach your children about friendship and how they can be good friends.
Help your child to understand that a good friend:
There are so many great friendships portrayed in children’s books. Some of our favourites include:
Books are a great way for parents and carers to start discussions about relationships and what makes a good friend (kind, thoughtful, helpful, good listener, etc). These books show, that despite their differences, people can still be good friends. They playfully illustrate the importance of being kind, respectful, and helping each other to solve problems.
This is one of the best ways to teach children about being a good friend. When talking about your friends, always be positive and be sure to make time for your friends and find ways to help them. Bring your children with you if possible so they can see the impact of good friends firsthand. Think about the characteristics of good friends and demonstrate them consistently yourself.
Being a good friend takes practice, so don’t expect to get it right first or every time. Keep encouraging your children and help them by being a good friend yourself.
Visit our Parenting HUB | For more tips and practical advice on building positive relationships with your child.
The resources in our Parenting HUB are put together by our family specialists who work with families across Sydney every day. If you would like to know more about this topic, please fill in our 'Contact Us' form and we'll get in touch. You can also call our professional Parent Line NSW counsellors on 1300 1300 52 for individual advice.
Disclaimer: This article does not give professional advice. The contents constitute general information of a summary nature of interest and relevance at the time of publication. You should not rely on the contents as professional advice but should seek, formal advice in particular matters relevant to your particular situation