Remember trying to fit in to school— sometimes succeeding, sometimes not? I'm not talking about clubs or circles, which are easy to get into, but cliques, which are not. Membership in a clique is gained and maintained by by eagerly the other birds.
Somehow, I had almost convinced myself that there weren't any cliques around when I was in school, back in my state of New Jersey. But they were all there: the, the , the . Perhaps I'd forgotten about them because I hadn't been a member.
My son is now in middle school, and I know from his experience that kids nowadaysand being clumped into more or less the same groups as in my day. Although gadgets and trends change with the times, basic social behavior hasn't.
Someone who, like me, ends up on the outside of these "in groups" is called a lone wolf., they too can form a group: . , I find this . How can you be in a group, and still be alone?
Alternatively, loners maystudents in other grades for friendship. This was the choice that I made. Older kids were wise and experienced enough to know almost as much as adults — sometimes more. By one or two of them, I eventually figured out that the world is bigger than I had been led to believe. For me, , these communications taught me more about work, life and than anything I learned in class.
If schoolsfriendships between grades, they can help today's kids to the cliques. One way to encourage this is called "speed friending." For this, students all pair up in a and, for a few minutes, ask and answer simple, questions. The kids then switch partners and repeat, switch and repeat, all while trying to remember names and faces. Think without the dating, or speed networking without the business cards.
Partly as a reaction to the U.S.'s many school shootings, in which shooters are often loners, speed friendingincreasingly in high schools. By more diverse among students, educators hope to counter . Sounds like a good idea, and not only when violence is commonplace. By reaching up a grade or two, a kid might find a once-in-a-lifetime mentor. By reaching down, they can become one. At the very least, they'll have a few more chances to wave and on campus. And maybe something might just " ," turning new into real friends.
The Japan Times ST: June 22, 2018