Before my kids started elementary school, our world seemed pretty small. I had my mommy friends made up of my MOMS group friends, neighbors and preschool connections, and beyond that, things were pretty simple. We had a lot of long and lazy afternoons, park playdates and early Friday nights. Our little family focused more on naps, diapers and lost lovies than anything else.
And then my kids moved into elementary school, and like lightning, our world exploded with soccer Saturdays, family picnics, PTA, scouts, room parents, fundraisers, meetings, clubs, field trips and tons of new faces in our lives. And it doesn’t take long to recognize that there are groups of people who are pretty influential in the elementary school space. These are the groups of people who are working together, making things happen and having a great time together.
But how does the new gal fit in? How do you navigate the “mom scene” and fit in with the other moms in your child’s school?
When you walk solo into this environment, sometimes it isn’t easy, but there are a few things you can do to make it easier — and more fun. (Remember, we learned some serious life lessons from middle school and high school. We’re older and wiser now. This is cake!)
1. Be yourself — Embrace your awesomeness, and don’t try to do or be anything that you are not. When you’re meeting new people, it’s all about the give and take of conversation. People want to share and be heard, so listen and share, but above all, be you.
2. Get involved — Start small, and know that every little bit you do to support your child’s school will be appreciated. Look for the vacancies in the PTA or PTO directory or call the volunteer coordinator and find a small job that works for you. There’s no better way to meet new people and make connections than by getting involved!
3. Take risks — Step out of your comfort zone, and know that meeting new people and trying new things isn’t always easy — but it does get easier. Ask another mom out for a cup of coffee. Invite the family of your child’s best pal over for pizza one Friday. Suggest that several volunteers go out for dinner before a school event. Attend meetings and school functions, and support what the other parents are already doing.
Sometimes we all need an extra push to move into new situations and to meet new people, and especially when it comes to meeting new mommy friends and breaking into the “mom scene,” we all need a few reminders.
You can do it. Now go get involved! Make something happen! And have fun doing it!
What am I missing? Is there something you’d add to this list of ways for breaking into the “mom social scene” at your kid’s school? Let us know how you are making mommy friends!