In recent years, research has revealed significant differences in the ways that girls and boys socialise and form relationships. Whereas boys have a tendency to form friendships with others who share the same interests as them, girls’ friendships are more likely to stem around the need for a deeper emotional connection. Friendships are of prime importance to most girls, with some research indicating that it can be more important to girls to have friends than to gain academic success.
Girls have a lot to gain from the positive and supportive relationships that they form with other girls. However, many girls struggle with friendships and the down side of the close nature of these relationships means that they can lend themselves to disputes arising from competitiveness, rivalry and ‘ownership’ issues. Research has revealed insights into the disputatious nature of girls’ relationships and that those situations which can be surmised as a simple ‘falling out’ between girls are in fact often concealing subtle and covert types of relational aggression and bullying behaviour.
Like any type of bullying, the effects of bullying can be highly detrimental to the physical and emotional wellbeing of girls and cause diminished confidence and self-esteem and poor academic progress and achievement.
Celebrating Girls’ Friendships: a whole school programme
this is a KS2 curriculum intervention programme designed to support the development of positive relationships between all girls. The programme equips girls to manage challenges between friends in an appropriate and constructive manner to ensure the protection of their own and other girls’ wellbeing. It is based on extensive research around girls’ friendships and has been shaped by the experiences of local Cambridgeshire schools.
The programme includes learning opportunities which examine:
- the complexities of girls’ friendships and why they sometimes fall out and the nature of the social structures within their relationships
- other external influences which impact positively and negatively on their behaviour and ultimately how they relate to others
- the nature of relational aggression and bullying between girls
- strategies including the importance of a healthy self-relationship and the use of Cognitive Behaviour Therapy as long term approaches for promoting resilience and preventing relational aggression and bullying between girls.
The activities within the programme can be used in a targeted way to support individuals or groups of girls who exhibit challenging behaviour. It may also be used with whole year groups as part of a preventative programme. They incorporate engaging interactive resources such as Smart Note Book and film and include support and guidance for teaching staff.
The programme can also be used as a method for engaging parents and carers through experiences such as a Mums’ and Daughters’ Workshop.
The complete package costs £195 including postage and packing. The programme can also be purchased as part of a course. Contact the PSHE Service to place an order.
Discounts and licencing packages together with training opportunities can be negotiated for Local Authorities or similar organisations considering a bulk purchase.
We offer courses on Celebrating Girls’ Friendships for schools staff and consultancy throughout the year.