Methods of Education: The Good Friend and the Responsibility of the Parent/Educator to Direct his Child to Choose the Right Friend

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methods of education:

the good friend and the responsibility of the parent/educator to direct his child to choose the right friend

having a companion or friend satisfies a social and psychological need in the child. till the age of four, children tend to be in a group where each of them plays separately. after turning four years old, children prefer to play and interact in a group ([1]). when the child gets older, he needs more time to spend with his friends and companions which marks the beginning of the independence phase as he does not need his parents to play with him or entertain him because he has his friends. as for adolescence stage, friendship and good company are some of the most important psychological and social needs that are indispensable to teenagers ([2]).

the most important condition of having a good friendship is the appropriateness of the child’s age with the age of his friends or companions. they should be at the same age or almost the same age to harmonize physically and mentally, because if the child is much younger than his friends he will be an imitator to them and if he is much older than the rest, then he would feel responsible for their safety. this does not mean banning him from playing with older children, but rather not to direct him to much younger or much older groups ([3]). fellowship should be good and positive so the parent/educator has to direct and encourage his child to befriend the best behaved children and to choose to live with good neighbors. he should also enroll his child in halaqat (rings) of memorizing qur’an, summer cultural centers and libraries ([4]). the parent should also strengthen his relationships with the righteous and moral people from friends and relatives ([5]), this way it would be easier for his child to associate with their children who most likely will be good friends.

the parent/educator should not disapprove concerning a certain friend whom his child likes, as the child will get closer to that friend when he sees this attitude from his parent. if this friend is a good one and from a good righteous family then the parent should welcome such friendship, invite this friend to come to his home, visit his family and join them in a picnic or trip ([6]). we should allow them to visit, message, text and talk on the phone. if he is a bad company or negative friend then we should clarify to the child the badness of his friend’s manners and encourage him to make new friendships at the same time, so that he gradually ends this friendship with this negative friend and does not feel lonely when he leaves him as he already has new companions.

some parents make the mistake of banning their children from forming any friendships when they are young, and then when the child grows up and becomes more independent he makes negative friendships because he does not have the skill to choose good friends over the years. this bad situation could have been avoided if the parents trained their child since a very young age to befriend righteous peers.


([1]) nemow al-tifl watansh’atu by fawziyah diab: page 104-106.

([2]) al-morahiqoun by abdul aziz al-neghimshy: page 62.

([3]) nemow al-tifl watansh’atu by fawziyah diab: page 104-106.

([4]) al-morahiqoun by abdul aziz al-neghimshy: page 81-75.

([5]) tarbiyat al-awlad fil islam by abdullah naseh elwan: 2/811.

([6]) awladna fi dou’ al-tarbiyah al-islamiyah by mohamed ali qutb: page 100.

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