How to teach your child to use social skills and learn about the world outside of school
Parents should make sure their children are able to engage with the world around them and learn the basic social skills they need to navigate their way through their world.
The best way to teach children how to use the world is to make sure they are equipped to use it, a new study suggests.
But there’s a catch.
Parents who make sure children understand the basics of social skills, such as respecting others and expressing themselves, can actually increase their children’s ability to use their social skills.
A new study by the University of Wisconsin, Madison, shows that kids who learn how to interact with others learn to be more assertive and cooperative.
But the study also suggests that kids can’t really get their social life right unless they’re willing to let their peers be the ones who have the fun.
The study also found that children who spend too much time playing with others and not enough time in front of their computer are more likely to experience low self-esteem, loneliness and self-injury.
“The fact that children are spending more time in groups and socializing with others is a positive sign that the kids are having fun and that they are getting some social interaction,” said study author Emily Roesch, a UW professor of psychology and director of UW’s Center for Social Learning and Development.
“It’s important to realize that children spend too little time with friends, too much attention on computer and video games, too little physical activity, too many books and magazines, too few exercise activities and too little attention to how their friends and family relate to them.”
The UW study was published online this week in the Journal of Applied Social Psychology.
Roescher said the findings are the first to look at how to help children understand how the world works and how to express themselves in ways that others can understand.
She said it’s not just about teaching kids how to think and behave, but how to make friends and be social.
For example, if a parent says, “I have to be there for my son,” but they don’t know how to ask a question, or if they’re trying to teach kids to be good leaders or good role models, it might not be the best thing to say, she said.
It’s also important to keep in mind that if your child has low self esteem, it could be a sign of poor self-regulation and social problems.
So, how do you get kids to do well in their social interaction?
“There are a few things that can make them more effective,” Roeschers said.
“One is to tell them that if they want to succeed in social interactions, they have to have the confidence that they can succeed in any situation.”
One way to tell that children need to feel safe is to encourage them to be open and honest, she explained.
Children who feel anxious when they’re alone with a stranger or if their family members are not around are less likely to be assertive in their interactions with others.
Parents also can encourage their kids to take time to explore their environment, she added.
“If your kids spend more time with their peers and less time with computers, they’re going to be better at getting through a social situation,” Rosesch said.
It’s the same way to be positive and encouraging.
Teach them to take risks, say, to have fun at the beach or to have a great time with a friend.
Kids need to be able to do things that adults would never do.
They need to find joy in doing what they love, she told LiveScience.
If a child has a hard time expressing themselves in a positive way, they are likely to become self-isolated and anxious.
Rosescher recommends making sure your child can express himself in a meaningful way, such that they’re not afraid of people being offended.
But, Roesches said, “In general, the more kids you have interacting with their classmates, the better the chance that they will be able and comfortable with other people.”
Roescher and her co-authors include R. Lee Wilson and Jennifer L. Loomis of UW; Stephanie E. Jones of the University at Buffalo; and Lauren B. O’Connor and Melissa A. Lutz of the UW Department of Psychology.
The findings were based on a national survey of 3,935 parents, ages 4 to 18, completed from March 2016 through April 2017.
The survey was designed to determine how parents teach their children how the social world works.
The data was collected from 2,813 parents in each state.
For more information, contact:Jennifer L. Olin at [email protected] or 206-464-9333.
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