Remembering Old Friends

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Liam always had about two good friends at a time in his life. His first friend was the one who I previously described, who loved video games and also had social skills struggles. We went on vacation with that friend and he and Liam would have play dates from time to time.

As is sometimes the case with younger children, as these boys did not attend the same elementary school, they slowly grew apart.

He had also kept two other friends from first grade. I know that he was assigned the same class as they were in second grade. This was extremely generous on the part of the school. One boy, just had a ton of patience. He was consistently kind to Liam. But he was not the type of friend that Liam would keep. He had different interests. Although he always remained friendly with Liam, they weren’t really friends by the end of second grade.

Another friend was a precocious, highly verbal girl. Because they had reading and math together daily, and she could keep up with Liam academically in many ways, she started to see what Liam had to offer, in terms of intellect. While she did most of the talking, she frequently sought Liam’s opinion about what they were learning. She invited him to her house to get to know him better. She was a very good friend.

Kieran always seemed to have one best friend – they were fiercely loyal to each other. The two of them were always the nucleus. Others were attracted to them, but could not break in.

My heart wished for this type of friendship Liam for as well. Wade moved away in the middle of second grade. Kieran still misses him (talked about him this past Tuesday) and has not had a similar friendship since. I pray for him to find one again.

Mea is fast friends with, literally, everyone: teachers and peers alike. She has never had one best friend. Everyone takes turns. Once, I was teaching a guided reading group with some of Mea’s second grade classmates. I had to break up an argument among two of them over who knew Mea longer and, therefore, who was her better friend.

Moreover, Mea can go into a completely new environment (such as a playground), and wind up with a best friend after about 30 minutes.

My children’s way of making and holding friendships reflects their personalities.

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