Making new friends

A child's main anxiety may be the fear of not knowing anyone when they first start school or having no friends. But children are usually very flexible in making new friends. And some schools will actively help new pupils to get to know one another through peer mentoring or buddying schemes.

Children sometimes make friends and then fall out again for a short time - many different groupings and regroupings can occur in the early days.  You can help your child by encouraging them to:

  • get to know as many classmates as possible
  • talk to you about them if he or she wants to
  • encourage them to build a social life with friends outside of school
  • invite and visit friends after school or at weekends, if circumstances permit
  • ask them to join clubs that they are interested in, as there may be like minded friends attending too

Discourage your child from being over-reliant on a small group of friends. If your child feels excluded by a group encourage her or him to make friends with other pupils. Involvement in local clubs or play centres may help. If they are struggling to make friends, speak to the school and see if they are able to support your child and offer suggestions too. 

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How we can help you

If you would like support and advice, you can talk to one of our Family Support Workers by calling our confidential helpline on 0808 800 2222. You can also share experiences and advice with other parents on our Forums. Family Lives is here for you and you can contact us about any family issue, big or small.

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