This is the last of our 6-part series on family relationships. Click to read parts one and two, three, four and five. All of the blog posts in this series are focused on how families can use Search Institute’s Developmental Relationship Framework–the key elements of strong relationships–as their kids transition to middle or high school.]
Expanding possibilities for teens means “connect me with people and places that broaden my world.” These three everyday actions expand possibilities as kids transition to middle or high school:
Helping kids build relationships opens doors for them and enlarges their world–all valuable tools as they enter into their teen years.
By connecting with people, places, and experiences, our kids…
But parents can sometimes feel uneasy about expanding possibilities. As children transition into their teens, they spend more and more time with other people and explore new ideas. That can all be worrisome for parents. We want to protect our kids. What will they pick up from those other adults, ideas, and experiences? Will other people meddle? Will our kids turn to them instead of to us?
But here’s the good news: relationships with other adults usually improve teens’ relationships with their parents. When kids are exposed to other ideas, they learn and grow—particularly when they talk to their family about what they’re learning from others.
Encourage your child to think about both adults and other kids they interact with at home, in your extended family, at school, in afterschool programs, in the community, and in other places. Invite your child to think about…
If your child names people you don’t know, ask questions to learn more about them.
Developmental relationships can be built everywhere, and helping your teen make vital connections is an important part of the transition to middle and high school.
Do you work with middle or high school kids in a school or program? We would like to offer you the opportunity to download an 80-minute workshop curriculum for parents called RELATIONSHIPS THAT MATTER: 5 Keys to Helping Your Child Succeed (Available in English and Spanish).
With this single session workshop, you can help parents understand and focus on five areas of parent-child relationships that are key to their youth’s success in school and other areas of life. You can also create a stronger connection with the parents of the youth in your school or program.