How Strong Friendships In Early Childhood Impact Your Child’s Development and Overall Wellbeing.

Friendships are powerful relationships that influence our child’s development throughout their lifetime. Self esteem , social relationships , empathy, learning what is acceptable or not acceptable behaviors are developed amongst friends .

Dr. Paul Schwartz, an expert in child psychology and behavior, states, “Friendships contribute significantly to the development of social skills, such as being sensitive to another’s viewpoints, learning the rules of conversation, and age-appropriate behaviors.”

Luckily there are many ways that parents can play a significant role in sharing the value of friendship with their children. Parents, when they assist their children in interacting within social situations and problem solving with others, can show their children that early friendships can greatly enrich their lives.

  • Use play as a tool to promote friendships early.

  • For friendships to grow and social skills to develop, parents must play an active role in creating opportunities for their child to interact with others their own age.

  • Talk your child through early interactions with peers. Many times, children do not have the sophisticated vocabulary and can’t always express what they’re feeling to a new friend .

  • You can model how to interact with other peers by being present and engaging children in conversation and play . When they are comfortable , they will direct the play and move forward in cultivating their friendships .

Why Family Time Is So Important

“Family is not an important thing. It’s everything.”
–Michael J. Fox

“Your children won’t be young forever, but the memories you make together as a family can certainly last that long.”

–Christine Martin

Positive family memories are powerful enough to last throughout life, they’re also essential in helping children develop essential social, emotional, and academic skills. When families spend quality time together, they form strong bonds that foster trust.

Although it’s hard to deny that spending quality time together as a family is important, it’s not always easy to do in today’s world. Many parents are working more, some parents have situations where they do not live with their children 100% of the time, and schedules are becoming more crammed and time-sensitive. All of these circumstances, plus many others, can make quality time hard to come by. But there are simple ways to inject some memory-making fun into the moments you can dedicate to your children:

The drive in the car can have lasting memories on a long road trip or on the way to school. Singing songs, knock, knock jokes , finding letters on signs on the road , I spy colors or license plates from different states , conversation or problem solve issues or feelings your child might have .

Simply gathering around the dinner table and asking questions can create laughter and special moments that your children won’t forget.

Also, don’t forget to use the activities you already have on hand like board games or the basketball hoop in your backyard. Gather around the table or go outside and get active. These activities will not only provide opportunities to bond, but will also give your children opportunities to listen,follow directions, take turns, and cooperate.

What cherished family memories do you have ?