Date
21 January 2019
Peer relationships 002

Supporting positive peer relationships

Support students to build relationships and work successfully with others. Adapt the strategies that are most useful/relevant.

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Strategies for action

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Support and strengthen peer relationships

Relationships foster a sense belonging, which is an important basis for learning. Create an inclusive environment where students can work together and support and encourage each other to learn.

For many students, school can be a lonely place, and low classroom acceptance by peers can be linked with subsequent disengagement and lowered achievement.

Five suggestions for implementing this strategy:

  1. Teach social skills

    Includes:

    • Video
    • Resources
  2. ​Understand social and emotional learning

    Includes:

    • Video
    • Resources
  3. Facilitate positive peer relationships

    Includes:

    • Video
    • Resources
  4. ​Support friendships

    Includes:

    • Video
    • Resources
  5. Support students in the playground

    Includes:

    • Resources

Facilitate collaborative learning

Use a structured, collaborative approach to provide students with specific roles and supports to build successful relationships.

Design learning opportunities where students with differing skills and achievements learn together and take responsibility for both individual and group achievement.

John Medcalf, 1995

Three suggestions for implementing this strategy:

  1. Organise a collaborative environment

    Includes:

    • Video
    • Resources
  2. Plan opportunities for collaboration

    Includes:

    • Video
    • Resources
  3. Cooperative learning strategies

    Includes:

    • Video
    • Resources

Key resources

Website

What is SEL?

The Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL) is the world’s leading organisation advancing the practice of promoting integrated academic, social, and emotional learning (SEL) for all children from preschool to high school. Their website provides information about SEL competencies, whole school approaches for introducing and teaching SEL, and resources.

Publisher: Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional

Website

The FRIENDS resilience programmes

Information about the FRIENDS programmes for schools is available on this website. The programmes include Fun Friends for years 4–7, Friends for Life for years 8–11, and My FRIENDS for youth aged 12–16.

Publisher: Friends Resilience

File

Teachers and teacher aides working together: Fostering peer relationships

This New Zealand Ministry of Education module offers practical suggestion and strategies to foster students’ connections to peers and their sense of belonging at school.

Publisher: Ministry of Education | Te Tāhuhu o te Mātauranga

Website

The Peer Support Programme

Information on The Peer Support Programme a structured introduction to school under the guidance of senior students who are trained as leaders.

Publisher: New Zealand Peer Support Trust

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