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Have a Great Year with New Friends
(Continued from EdWorld At Home)

Everyone is singing and dancing in all those commercials you’ve been seeing for back-to-school sales. But we all know that reality is different, and that going back to school can be hard, especially when you’re starting a new grade, in a different building, with different kids.

It can be hard getting to know new people and making new friends. But there’s no better time to do it than right at the start of the school year.

Here are some ideas that might help you out:

Get involved.
Is there an activity you want to try out, or a club you want to join? Then you should do it. It just makes sense that if you want to meet new people, and you love to sing, then you’ll have something in common with the kids in the school chorus, and find some new friends there. The first couple of times you go, it might be hard to keep up. But give it three tries, and we’ll bet that you’ll be right in the middle of things.

To Make Friends, Be Friendly.
You don’t have to run down the hallway like a talk-show host, shaking hands and giving high-fives. That would be weird. But if you want to meet new people, you need to show people that you’re friendly. That means smiling when people say hello – which is not always as easy as it sounds. It also means looking at people when they talk to you, and answering questions they ask you.

Being Nice Helps, Too.
If you see someone playing a game you like, or listening to music you like, go ahead and tell them that you like it, too. Or if someone paints a nice picture in class, tell them. Everyone likes to hear that other people like the same things they do, and so a lot of friendships start when someone says something nice to someone else.

Let Other People in.
One of the best things about new friends is that they can introduce you to their other friends. When a new friend introduces you to his or her other friends, show that you’re happy to meet them. Smile and say something nice. Suggest something all of you can do together. Just like that, you know a lot of new kids.

Most of All, Be Yourself.
You may prefer to hang back and watch what other people are doing before you jump in. It may be hard for you to go up to new people and just start chatting. That’s OK. Nine out of ten people say that they feel shy when they meet new people. So there’s nothing strange about it at all. But if you try it just once a day, you may get more comfortable with new people. The better you get to know your classmates, the better your school year will be.

Give it a try!

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