Good social skills allow kids to enjoy better peer relationships. Making friends takes practice, and you can help your child by rehearsing social situations and role playing ahead of time. Look for teachable moments where you can help your kids do better.
Teaching kids’ social skills is one of the most complex, confusing, but rewarding aspects of raising young children. I am here to help you learn the 5 most important social skills for kids.
Sharing is a part of daily life. That doesn’t mean it’s easy! A willingness to share a snack or share a toy can go a long way to helping kids make and keep friends.
When you’re teaching children the concept of sharing, you can teach different things at different ages and it’s important to consider the child’s brain development.
2. Following Directions
Following directions becomes particularly important once your child enters into their school years.
This is having the ability to listen, understand expectations, and follow through in a timely manner.
Keep in mind, however, that multi-step directions are challenging for young children. To help them develop the ability to follow directions, give them one direction at a time.
Strategies to teach following directions:
Play games for following directions, like Simon Says and Freeze.
3. Making Eye Contact
Good eye contact is an important part of communication. Some kids struggle to look at the person they’re speaking to.
You might even show your children how it feels to hold a conversation with someone who isn’t making eye contact.
Invite them to tell another story and make appropriate eye contact while they’re talking.
It’s normal for young children to be impatient. However, patience really is one of the most rewarding social skills for kids. It’s important to remember that each child has a different temperament, and they learn patience in various ways.
One strategy might work well for one toddler, it may not for another, and that’s okay. The goal is to find what works for your child and utilize those techniques to help them manage situations that require patience.
Patience is indeed a virtue! By introducing it now, you can set your child up to reap the many benefits of this skill throughout their lives.
For example: Practice turn-taking with board games.
Try to practice and prepare him as much as possible at every opportunity, be it dishing up at the table or getting into the car. It helps with his social skills.
5. Using Manners
Good etiquette and social manners are essential life skills that enhance the personal, social and emotional development of every individual.
Saying please and thank you and using good table manners can go a long way toward helping your child gain attention for the right reasons. Teachers, other parents, and other kids will respect a well-mannered child.
The more your child experiences the benefits of social skills, the more intuitive these skills will become for them. However, all children learn at different rates. With practice (and patience!), we know they’ll get there.
If your child seems to be struggling with social skills more than other kids, talk to your pediatrician. While it may just take a little extra reinforcement and maturity to catch up, a lack of social skills also can be a sign of other problems.
Coach Benjamin Mizrahi. Educator. Learning Specialist. Family Coach. Father. Husband.
More articles on www.MrMizrahi.blog