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After-School Convo Starters

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Glossary of Terms

At URSTRONG, we believe it’s important to use kids’ language for kids’ problems. That’s why we have our very own, unique language of friendship. Here are some important terms that children, parents, and teachers learn in our program.

Friendship Fire®: Any situation between you and a friend that results in negative feelings.

Mean-on-Purpose: When someone is intentionally unkind to someone else.

Quick Comeback: A very short word or phrase that is used when someone is Mean-on-Purpose. Quick Comebacks are designed to let the other person know that you heard/saw what they did and you’re not okay with it.

Friend-o-meter: A visual tool that assesses the health of friendships, ranging from the healthy zone to the unhealthy zone.

Friend-o-cycle: The normal cycle in a friendship that brings the friendship back to the healthy zone after experiencing a Friendship Fire. The phases of the Friend-o-cycle are: Healthy Friendship – Fire – Confront the issue – Talk-it-Out – Forgive & Forget – Closer & Stronger – Healthy Friendship…

4 Friendship Facts: A set of four facts that help us have realistic expectations in our friendships so we understand what is normal.

  1. No friendship (relationship) is perfect.
  2. Every friendship is different.
  3. Trust & Respect are the two most important qualities of a friendship.
  4. Friendships change…and that’s okay.

Red Shirt Girl and Striped Shirt Boy: Two characters that remind us about the importance of body language.

Friendship Ninja: A Friendship Ninja is someone who surrounds themselves with friends in the healthy zone of the Friend-o-meter. A Friendship Ninja is kind and friendly to everyone. A Friendship Ninja understands the 4 Friendship Facts and puts out their Friendship Fires when they ignite. A Friendship Ninja stands up for themselves and their friends. A Friendship Ninja makes new friends and understands that friendships change…and that’s okay. Above all else, a Friendship Ninja is someone you want to be friends with because they’re true to who they are!

“How was school today?” Good. “What did you do?” Nothing. (Sound familiar? Let’s dig a little deeper with these questions!)

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Sometimes it’s like talking to a brick wall after your kids come home from school. You want to connect with them, but they aren’t quite ready to open up and connect with you.

Just like we need to unwind after a big day at work, kids need this time and space as well to transition and come down from the intensity of school. Some children even experience what’s called, After-School Restraint Collapsea term coined by Andrea Loewen Nair (Counsellor and Parenting Educator). ASRC is characterised by an emotional meltdown that results from a full day of self-regulating, following rules, and essentially being a “good student”.  Not an ideal time to have a conversation!

After giving your child time to relax, here are a few creative questions to get a little more information about their day at school:

  1. Tell me about your day.
  2. What was the best thing that happened at school today?
  3. Tell me one thing you learned today.
  4. Did anything make you laugh today? Tell me about it.
  5. How did you help someone today?
  6. What was hard today?
  7. Describe what you did at recess.
  8. Did you have any Friendship Fires today? Tell me about it. 
  9. Where is your friendship on the Friend-o-meter with _____ today?
  10. Did you have a cool conversation with your teacher today? What did you discuss?

Choose one or two to ask, but be sure not to inundate your child with too many questions. Your goal is to connect with them, show them you care, and give them space to open up.

Happy chatting! 🙂

 

Written by Dana Kerford

Friendship Expert and Founder, URSTRONG