Spending Time With Your Child's Friends

Your child can't say enough good things about his new best friend. However, you've never met the kid. It's important to get to know your children's friends and classmates. We talked to several moms about how they get to know their kids' friends.

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School introductions

Most moms we talked to get to know their kids' friends through school events and activities. It's the logical place to meet your child's friends and their parents. After introducing yourselves at school, you can take things a step further and invite their friends over to your home or out with your family to do things on the weekend.

"I get to know my kids' friends through school activities. I have made connections and forged friendships through volunteering at the school," says Chicago mom and writer Lisa Steinke.

Introductions at school are often the best route, particularly when children are young.

"Both of our kids are in preschool, so we introduce ourselves to the parents of our kids' friends (or they introduce themselves to us) and then we'll get the kids together with the adults present," says Laura Willard, San Diego mom of two. "It's still pretty easy because our kids are so young!"

keep in mind

Getting involved in your child's life through school events will provide you with the opportunity to make new adult friends as well.

Read about making mom friends at the school yard >>

Opening up

Instead of sending your kids off somewhere else to hang out with their friends, you can encourage your children to invite their friends into your own home.

"I open up our home to my boys' friends," says Crystal Davis, Dallas mom of 13-year-old twin boys. "Our house is the place where all the neighbor kids hang out, play video games, do school projects, etc. I find that it's easier to get to know my kids' friends when they are under my own roof, rather than seeking them out at school activities or community events."

Read about when your child loses a friendship >>

Bonding over dinner

Every kid needs to eat. Many moms choose mealtime as the chance to get to know their children's friends. You can make it a weekly or monthly tradition to spend time with your kids' pals while breaking bread.

"Every Sunday, my kids are allowed to invite anyone they want over to dinner -- just one friend per child each week," says Veronica Garcia, Texas mom of three boys. "We order pizza or Chinese, have dinner together and then watch movies or play board games after. It's a great opportunity for family bonding time, plus a chance to get to know their friends."

Getting to know your kids' friends allows you the opportunity to learn more about your own children, as well as the people with whom they choose to be friends. Find out what to do if you dislike your kids' friends.

Lisa Scottoline -- Save me & Come Home book covers

Life vs. fiction

Want more? Check out two great reads in the new SheKnows Book Lounge by bestselling author Lisa Scottoline: Come Home and Save Me. Two riveting novels about the extraordinary lengths mothers will go to for their children. Head to our new SheKnows Book Lounge now.

More about kids and friendship

Teaching kids to handle fights with friends
My child has no friends: What to do
Making new friends through your kids

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