Making friends is tough.
It's especially hard, and important, for girls who are in the upper elementary grades, soon to move on to middle school.
Renee Rogers realized that when her daughter, Myah, had trouble learning how to make new friends. It became obvious when Rogers saw that Myah's twin brother had no trouble at all.
Rogers realized other girls may also have problems making new friends. That's when she decided to reach out to girls in fourth and fifth grades to bring them together and, hopefully, make new friends.
"This is a transitional time when they are getting ready to move to sixth grade and middle school," Rogers said. "It's a time when they have to learn how to make new friends. We have two grades here, so when they move up, they will know someone. That's kind of a cool thing."
Developing friendships brought Quarryville Elementary student Lily Gavin back to her second meeting.
"I had a lot of fun the first time I was here and I made new friends, so I wanted to come back," she said.
That was also what brought Kendra Dugan to last week's group.
Dugan, who is home schooled, said she enjoyed last week's program.
"I made new friends, I learned stuff, and I had fun," she said.
The gathering began with an introduction. Each girl introduced herself, giving her first name and linking it to something she liked. Kendra, for instance, professed to be enthusiastic about kangaroos. Each girl also repeated the names and attractions of each one who had already spoken.
"That makes your place the toughest," Rogers said to the ninth girl in the circle.
In February, the group attracted just students from Quarryville Elementary. Last week, they were joined by students from Bart-Colerain Elementary and girls who are being home schooled.
The group's second meeting, held Thursday evening, March 21, included a couple of crafts. In the first, each girl decorated a white mug. The finished cups were to be given away, Renee said.
"Think about other people, someone you don't say thanks to and you probably should," she told the girls. "Tonight is about other people."
The girls also created invitations they would hand out to invite others to attend the April meeting.
That activity came from an idea Gavin brought up at the group's first meeting in February.
Any activity can help the girls build relationships.
"We can incorporate anything into friendship. You can incorporate friendship and kindness into any activity," Rogers said.
The group meets at the SECA Building, Park Ave., Quarryville, from 4:30 to 6 p.m. on the third Thursday of the month. The next meeting will be on April 18.
While the program is free, Rogers asks girls to email SECA to reserve a space.
"That way, I will know how many supplies we will need," Rogers said.
If the interest holds, the program will continue through summer.