February arrives as the sixth month of school at Forest Heights. Six months makes a huge difference in the lives of elementary students and I enjoy watching the changes. So much learning takes place and the students really blossom.
During February, we will focus on the Character Word - Friendship! Friends are an important part of life - at any age. Friendships can affect our happiness, self-confidence and achievements. They can also: help develop social skills, teach us how to get along with other people, and help us learn different ways of understanding the world and the many different meanings we can make from life events.
When you sit down for meals, discuss how family-style eating and passing food is like sharing and taking turns with toys.
Use puppets to act out different situations (e.g., one puppet takes a toy from another puppet). Ask child what happened that was not a good way for the puppets to play together. Come up with ideas of nicer ways that the puppets could have played, including ideas like sharing and taking turns.
When leaving the house, ask the child to help you carry things. Afterward, thank them for helping.
Talk about your own social behaviors. You can say things like, "I said 'thank you' to Rachel because she passed me the milk" or "I think I'll help Uncle Larry put away the groceries."
Throughout daily routines outside of the house, talk about the different ways the people you see help (police officers, bus drivers, cashiers). Emphasize the helping nature of these jobs.
Use meal preparation as a chance to practice and talk about social skills. Have children get out ingredients, set the table or stir food. Discuss how important it is to help and how much the help is appreciated.
At any point during routines, talk about how families are like a special group of friends. Mention how you use kind words, share, and help each other just like with friends at school.
Teach children how to act when they are meeting new people. Practice shaking hands and manners that go with introductions.
For more ways to help your child develop friendships check out the following link: http://www.education.com/magazine/article/Helping_Children_Make_Friends/
If you need anything at all or if I can help in anyway please do not hesitate to contact me.