Every child has to step out of his comfort zone at one point or another and go out into the world to form new bonds. This might be overwhelming for kids who are shy and too clingy to their parents. Even though it’s a difficult task to get such a child socialize with other children, it’s not impossible. A little patience and understanding from parents can go a long way in encouraging a child to break free from any barriers and mix up well with age mates. As a parent, try not to make socializing a big deal for your child. Instead, make your child familiar and comfortable with the concept in a subtle manner.
The following are some practical strategies that might be useful for parents trying to get their child to socialize:-
- First and foremost, be a role model for your child. If you display good social ethics, your child is sure to follow. Teach your child basic social rules like sharing and listening when interacting with your friends.
- Organize some play dates by inviting your child’s friends over. Your purpose will be easy to accomplish if the kids invited are outgoing in nature. Involve kids in activities that require cooperation, such as baking and craft.
- Be quick to praise your child when he displays a social skill that you would love to see more of. It could be something as simple as sharing or helping someone.
- You can try role playing before the actual situation arises. Make your child familiar with who you are expecting and take turns pretending to be the guest and host. This dissolves a child’s anxiety greatly.
- Encourage your child to play games that are taught to them at school. It will boost his confidence and he’ll be in a better position to interact with his friends and strangers over the game. Having a skill or two makes a child feel worthy and improves his self esteem.
- Setting social rules at home also forces some kids out of their shells. Make it clear to your child that he must answer a question if asked by a guest or friend. It’s alright if the answer is a short one provided it’s polite. It’s also important to maintain eye contact when answering back.
- Expose your child to different social settings. Take him along to the grocery store, coffee shop, malls, etc. He will learn a lot by mere observation.
We at Boys and Girls Clubs Of Central Texas offer a series of programs for your kids up to the age of 18 years. These programs give them an opportunity to learn new skills, make new friends and also have loads of fun. To enroll your kid in any of our programs, visit us at 304 W Ave B, TX- 76541 or call Ms. Carol Dunn at 254-699-5808, Ext: 102.