Why is it that some children are more appealing than their counterparts? Why being with them fills you with happiness, while others give you mixed feelings of high and low? It is because of the social disposition of the children. You might wonder what social disposition has got to do with the appeal factor. Well, the answer is everything. Right from the time a baby is born, its world expands and social interactions form the basis of communication. Though a baby isn't able to speak clearly until it is about 18 months old, it nevertheless interacts through gestures, smile and body language since birth. And as the baby turns older and mature, social skills develop. It is these social skills that play an important role when the baby turns into an adolescent and later, an adult. Little acts of cooperation, sharing, participation, patience, listening, gratitude and so on help in making the child socially proficient. As such, just as your child steps into toddlerhood, teach him the appropriate social skills in order to establish life long manners and habits. This stage is the foundation stage on which the conduct of whole life depends; habits that a child learns during this period influence him as an adult. This is also the right age to teach him how to interact with others in the society. If not taken seriously or taught appropriately, children can become rude or impolite which will become a matter of concern for you for the whole life. Thus, to help you make your child socially adept, given below are certain tips that will help you in teaching social skills to children.
Teaching Children Social Skills
It is a common problem with many children that they don’t get enough time to participate in extracurricular activities, and miss the opportunity to learn important social skills. Extra curricular activities promote interaction with other children and it is through interaction that one can build social skills. Playing with other children will help make your child learn the value of cooperation, team spirit, participation, making friends, thus learning socially acceptable behavior. You can motivate him to join the local library, scouts' clubs, arts school and so. Simply playing with other children in the nearby park or lawn also helps in developing social skills.
Organize Hobby Session
If you think school is where the learning is limited to, you are absolutely wrong. Learning takes place everywhere, right from school to home to playground to even supermarket. Turn your home in to a learning zone and watch your toddler develop social skills. Organize hobby session in your home and call in all the children from the neighborhood, along with their parents. The activity can be as simple as a painting competition or a fashion show. Pre-inform all the toddlers and their parents about the time and day of the event. While the toddlers have two hours of pure fun mingling with each other, sharing stuffs, helping others, the adults can keep a check. Remember, the more your child interacts with others, the better would be his social skills.
Be a Role Model
Much of the learning during the childhood days is through observation. Your child learns what he sees and imitates the same. Thus, if you want to teach your child some social skills, it is important that you follow them. For, this way your child would imitate you and thus learn to conduct himself well when amidst other children and adults. Be polite and friendly when you talk to people. Make efforts to help other people when you see they are in need, such as opening doors for them, picking up things when people drop them and giving them or offering to carry things for friends. This way, your child would know what should be done and learn the same.
Building relationships require a child to possess social skills. For a child, the first challenge in terms of relationship is to make friends. Help your child work on his social skills and make friends. Help him become an initiator. Just as your child enters preschool, ask him to say "hi" to at least one new kid every day. This way, your child would initiate conversation. Also, make sure you ask him every day about how school was and how his friends were. This way, he would build stronger relationships right from childhood.
It’s Never Too Early
Remember, it is never too early to start instilling in your child the value of good manners and conduct. Just as your child turns one, start on building his social skills. Make him learn to smile, greet and wave at people. As your toddler starts speaking, teach him important phrases like "sorry", "please", "thank you" and so on. Whenever somebody hands over your child a chocolate, make him say thank you. Or when he needs something, ask him to add the word please. This way, your child would learn the basic manners required.
Hope these tips help you in teaching social skills to your child and he successfully learns to interact in society.