How to get your child to apologize to a friend when they do something wrong?

Dear Shannon, How do you do get your child to apologize to a friend when they do something wrong? The scenario: My child and another child were at a pool and sharing swim flippers, each child is 5 years old. My child throws one of the flippers in the deep end of the pool when it is the other child’s turn to use them and the flipper can’t be retrieved. The other child is obviously upset. What do I do? Rachel Hi Rachel, I hear your pain, or maybe more, your embarrassment and wanting to do the right thing. I can assure you, this is every parent’s feeling at this moment. Our instincts tell us to make the situation right, the question is how do we make the situation right for? Us? Our kid? The other kid? The other parent? From my experience with anyone under the age of 6 year olds, they are stretching out their wings of independence, still with a very limited idea or realization of consequences. Throwing the flipper in the deep end of the pool will have been a total experiment in curiosity. What will happen? Where will it go? This is exciting! This is so different than what we were playing before!! Yeah!! Parents automatically go to the place of, “They did that on purpose!” “They are being a brat!” “You are being bad!” (a whole other blog post to follow on useless words parents use) The parent’s Reaction A parent’s reaction dictates the response you are going to get from the child and how they will now handle this situation in future...