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Her face lit up as the little girl walked up to our house with her mom. She was a preschool classmate of Emma’s, and they now live around the corner from us. The girls chatted and excitedly went inside to play while Mom took a spin around our garage sale goods. When it was time for them to leave, both girls were disappointed. We promised to make an official play date very soon.
Being a homeschool family, we’ve avoided much of the bullying and clique-building issues that some kids face. That said, we have to be intentional about helping Emma make friend connections. She has a friend who comes over from time to time, but life gets busy and those play dates get pushed to the back burner. It’s easy to not be intentional about making that time.
At her age and in our situation, we’re in a place to help guide and influence who she’s friends with. We can arrange play dates with kids like the little girl who stopped at our garage sale, kids who are big-hearted and whose families share our values. We can avoid her spending time with kids who are rebellious or who have bad attitudes that could be contagious.
Yikes. That’s a lot of power.
“With great power comes great responsibility.” ~ Voltaire (and later Spiderman)
Taking a lesson from Voltaire (and Spiderman), we take the power AND the responsibility very seriously. While we wouldn’t discourage Emma from being friendly with all the kids at dance class, the library programs, church, and other events we attend, we want to be intentional about encouraging her to build the friendships that have the potential to enrich her life.
Encourage kids to build friendships that will enrich their lives not tear them down. <– Click to Tweet This
And now I’m off to be intentional and get that play date with the neighbor planned. 😉
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