My 7th grade daughter, struggling to meet new friends

My very cool, savvy, artistic, a bit quirky 7th grade daughter is struggling to connect with other kids (probably happening for a lot of them right now). We switched districts after 6th and moved to the Berkeley hills where we grew up. It's wonderful but with the pandemic and middle school and distance learning, it's been hard to connect with other kids, especially up in the hills.

She likes to read, draw, walk, play flute, skateboard, loves theater, watch movies, has pretty great taste in music. Hoping for some in-person summer activities, but I'm wondering if there are other adrift kids out there who might want to connect or if anyone has tips? 

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Hi, my adult son advised my younger daughter to join groups or clubs with interest similar to hers to meet people. Climbing gym, bicycling, ceramics, hiking, sailing. Especially coming from him it was helpful advice. The Bay Area is rich with resources. Being in a useful/needed position like CIT for the various camps is also motivating with exposure to all different age people is fun, too. Wish you & your family the best!

I don't have any recent advice, but speaking as someone who was the artistic, quirky (and not at all cool or savvy, so she's ahead of me) kid in middle school, it wasn't until high school that I really found my tribe, so sometimes middle school is just a transition phase and things are all jumbled up for everyone. I imagine it's doubly hard right now with not seeing other kids in person. But assuming school is in person in the fall, I'd encourage her to join a ready-made group at school that appeals to her interests - art club, school newspaper (do they still have those?), yearbook class, skateboard club, theatre production, whatever - and that's where she'll find the other kids like her. They're out there, but they're also off doing their own artistic, quirky, awesome things and sometimes they don't connect unless someone puts them in the same room together to work towards a common goal. ;)

Hi - Your post is anonymous so I don't know if anyone will be able to contact you directly.

We weren't around much this year, but sixth grade last year was similar for us. If you can, I would sign her up for a sport or camp or both (even if she doesn't click with the team or the group, at least there is the possibility that it might happen). We had good luck with the rec soccer teams at ABSC / FC Spurs, although I'm not sure what they are offering right now. Also would look at Berkeley Playhouse (Berkeley Playhouse - Where Music and Theater Come to Life). They run classes and camps where the kids put on shows. Some of the performances are quite impressive, and they are filled with nice kids. Plus putting on a show together is a good way to bond. I've also heard good things about Trackers camp, although from parents of younger kids, and the activities seem more independent. If you/she are open to it, you could also try to have her join the middle school group at a church or other organized religion. They are generally welcoming and not bad to learn more about even if religion isn't your thing. (First Presbyterian in Berkeley had a nice middle school group, although I'm not sure if they are meeting in person now.) 

Also, although I have been trying to keep her out of Berkeley because of the school situation, my 7th (going into 8th) grader will certainly be in the Berkeley Hills some this summer. If you want to direct message me, I'm happy to try to arrange a hang out and see if they can have fun together. It seems a lot more complicated at this age than for the younger ones, but can't hurt to try.