Science, Mathematics and History are important for kids to learn, but as parents, one of our primary responsibilities is to focus on children’s social skills as well.
No matter what phase of life kids are in, they will always need to interact with the society. Learning self-control, getting along with others, giving appropriate reactions to various social situations, following etiquette and even choosing friends—are skills that children will need to use anyway. So why not take an active role in teaching those?
However, be creative in your effort to reach out to them. Consider the following:
- Don’t try to overburden them with all the social knowledge that you have. Take one step at a time.
- Try to make social learning fun. Add humour and interesting examples.
- Sound relevant. Talk in your children’s language. Kids need to make a personal connection to what’s being taught.
- Don’t rush for results. Plant your seeds and wait patiently for the harvest.
- Reward the positive consequences. Kids need to hear the praise that they have worked hard to deserve!
As we do all of this though, we need to remember the words of Robert Fulghum, "Don't worry that your children never listen to you. Worry that they are always watching you." So, be aware that whatever you teach, you practise yourself too. Being socially fit is important for everyone - adults and children alike.