Something happened in our house recently that not only cut me to the core, but opened my eyes as well. My son has autism and he is home schooled. Henry plays on the Xbox a lot and he has a list of “friends” he virtually plays with. One of his friends that Henry plays with a lot abruptly “de-friended” him a few days ago. What this means is you can block someone from your circle of friends and they cannot play any games with you. It was heartbreaking and shocking to see how upset Henry was and how cruel this little boy is. It turns out the kids has been teasing Henry a lot and a few days ago Henry called him out on it and the kids took the cowards way out and blocked Henry. Thankfully one of our dear friends has a boy who is on Henry’s friend list and he told Henry he loved to play with him and with those kind words, Henry’s wound was healed. This made me realize how fragile our hearts and egos can be and how powerful a friendship can be. This made me think of how we can teach our kids about friendship and how they can learn from situations like this.
4 Ways You Can Teach Kids About Friendship
- Observe Your Child: In order to teach your children about being a good friend, you need to see how they interact with others. I overheard Henry talking to a friend of his and he was a bit rude. He knows a lot about a particular game and he was acting like a know-it-all. When we talked about it and I helped Henry see how he sounded to others when he spoke like that, he was able to tone down that part of his relationship with others.
- Teach People Skills: One aspect of being a good friend is being a good person. If you do not know how to treat others, they are not going to want to be around you. Teaching your kids people skills is key in helping them become a good friend. Show your kids that eye contact, listening, taking turns, asking permission, making compromises and other skills is how you become a good friend.
- Teach Charity: One of our core aspects of being a good person is how to treat those less fortunate than ourselves. When children see examples of how others may not have it as good as they do can help them learn compassion. Let your kids learn about donating their toys or helping a friend clean up their station, and they will learn about being charitable to their friends.
- Lead By Example: We are our kids best teachers, so when they see how we act, they tend to copy our behavior. If we are not nice to others, they are going to think it is okay to do that with their friends.
When you are working on teaching kids about friendship, you can also do so with television and movies. When your kids can watch a favorite cartoon or show in which friendship is exemplified, your child can learn from seeing. Netflix has a list of ‘dynamic duo’ titles to stream this month, which demonstrate the value of all kinds of friendships — whether it’s a sibling bond, classmate or furry friend. For the younger kids, Netflix has some family favorites like Bert and Ernie from Sesame Street or Bob and Larry from one of our favorites, Veggie Tales. My kids are super excited about the new Netflix original, “VeggieTales in the House,” premiers on Netflix on Nov. 26. For the older kids, like my teens, they really love watching Phineas and Ferb and Jack and Finn from Adventure Time. I was watching an episode of Gilmore Girls while I worked on this post because I love the strong bond between Lorelei and Rory.
Netflix offers so many titles the entire family can enjoy, there will be no boredom in yourhome! The Netflix steaming plan is affordable enough to fit in virtually anyone’s budget. You can stream directly through select TV’s, your gaming system or your mobile device. There are several choices for kids and adults of all ages, so there is sure to be something the entire family can enjoy. Signing up is quick and easy and you will find titles in categories like Kids, Family, Documentary, Popular On Netflix and much more. Be sure to follow Netflix on Facebook and Twitter.
How do you teach your kids about friendship?