Explain to your grade-schooler that everyone is good at something. Point out your own strengths and his. Ask your child to identify a strength or two in each of his friends.
Show him how understanding other people’s strengths can be used to start conversations and strengthen friendships. Praise him when he does this and offer feedback on how he can get better at it.
What you can say
“Jacob, I know you think I’m a good cook, and I think you’re good in sports. We’re all good at something. I want you to be a detective and look for things your friend Aiden is good at.”
“You could watch him or you could ask him what he likes to do. When you talk with him, bring up things he’s good at and plan on doing these things when you get together. Doing these things can help you be a good friend to him.”
Why this will help
Learning how to recognize other people’s strengths can build your child’s social skills in several ways. It can help him get into the habit of trying to see things from another person’s perspective. It can help him learn how to make other people feel good about themselves. Looking for strengths in others can also help him see his own strengths.