I just read a fantastic book to help kids learn about friendship skills – Growing Friendships: A Kids’ Guide to Making and Keeping Friends (Dr. Eileen Kennedy-Moore and Christine McLaughlin).
The book clearly explains simple strategies kids can use to both initiate friendships and be more aware of their “friendship busting” behaviors. With clever cartoons and simple text, Kennedy-Moore and McLaughlin break down simple tips kids can use to both make and keep friends. The text portions are short enough to read quickly in one sitting.
After reading the book, I checked back on Amazon for the age rating. It says ages 6-9, but I think this book is useful for all ages – even adults! I’m going to figure out how to incorporate the lessons and ideas at summer camp to help kids understanding some of the nuances about making and keeping friends. Possibly, counselors can read-aloud a tip, then share the cartoon with campers and discuss the skill. Teachers, too, could utilize the book in the classroom to promote social skills. I’m so glad I found this book and Kennedy-Moore’s fabulous website. I highly recommend that parents, teachers, and other youth development professionals use this book with any child struggling with friendships.
Here’s a YouTube trailer about the book:
From psychologist and children’s friendships expert Eileen Kennedy-Moore and parenting and health writer Christine McLaughlin comes a social development primer that gives kids the answers they need to make and keep friends.
Friendship is complicated for kids. Almost every child struggles socially at some time, in some way. Having an argument with a friend, getting teased, or even trying to find a buddy in a new classroom…although these are typical problems, they can be very painful. And friendships are never about just one thing.
With research-based practical solutions and plenty of true-to-life examples—presented in more than 200 lighthearted cartoons—Growing Friendships is a toolkit for both girls and boys as they make sense of the social order around them.
Children everywhere want to fit in with a group, resist peer pressure, and be good sports—but even the most socially adept children struggle at times. But after reading this highly illustrated guide on their own or with a caring adult, kids everywhere will be well equipped to face any friendship challenges that come their way.
Growing Friendships, Eileen Kennedy-Moore’s Psychology Today column
Want to read more about kids’ friendships? I’d love to send you my free ebook, 10 Friendship Skills Every Kid Needs. Subscribe to my weekly email below, and I’ll send you your free download!