Good relationships are vital to everyone’s lives, including preteens. There are many ways that kids make new friends and keep good friendships, but one of the most unexpected ways that a child can develop a new friendship is by keeping a journal.
Keeping a journal that helps to build good relationships with new friends means a child might share their journal writings. A tween might journal share with her new friend and have her friends, in turn, participate in the process of keeping that journal.
This kind journaling defies the notion of what a journal is and a child might not want to share his or her most private thoughts in a shared journal. But when used well, shared journals can be an excellent way for kids to reaffirm their newest friendships and maintain good, healthy relationships in the process. Indeed, a child might have a private journal that is kept for her eyes only, and a journal that she chooses to share with her best friend(s).
There are several ways in which a shared journal can help a preteen to build good relationships and benefit her new friendship.
When kids share their journals with their friends, they can also share in the experiences they’ve had. For example, if your child goes to an amusement park with her best friend and they come back to your house for a sleepover, they might enjoy writing in a shared journal about that experience.
A week later, when your daughter shares a fun experience with another friend, she and that friend might like to sit down and journal about that shared experience together. Over time, not only will the friendships be strengthened by the journaling, but your child will also have a fun and special record of good times with good friends, in turn building and strengthening her good relationships with them.
Sharing a journal with new friends (or old ones) in this way not only helps your child strengthen friendships, but also helps both parties improve writing skills, value the craft of journal keeping and enjoy each other’s company.
Say it without saying it
When a tween writes in a journal she will sometimes share what she wouldn’t say to somebody’s face, and often these are good things that she just isn’t comfortable saying outright to her friends. If a tween shares a journal with her friends, especially her newest ones, she might be surprised by the good things the friend has to say and the surprising ways this type of communication can improve relationships.
What’s so great about using journaling to improve relationships and friendships is that it is no different than exchanging notes in class or writing a text message to a friend and saying something nice. It is interesting that preteens aren’t likely to say these nice things to each other face-to-face, but are much more comfortable sharing them in writing.
In general, journaling can boost a preteen’s self-esteem. A preteen who keeps a regular journal has an outlet for sharing feelings and emotions and developing some connection with the world around her through the written word.
A tween with higher self-esteem will naturally be a better friend to the people around her and be better able to maintain good relationships that serve her best interests and healthy development today and for years to come.
Sharing a journal is a fun and unique way to for tweens to bond with friends, to share the experiences that new friends want to remember and to help children become comfortable with who they are and the things they have done. A good relationship and solid friendships are the valued results of shared journal keeping.
Journal Buddies builds writing skills in boys and girls.