Montessori Parenting: How To Improve Your Child Social Skills

social skills

School days have come, and with them come to their demands. Schools promote social skills, but they might not be enough to help your child grow into a confident young adult. That’s where you can help. Today’s parents are juggling so much that it is hard to find important time for themselves and their children. However, that doesn’t mean that parents can’t help their kids build meaningful skills, including social skills. Parents need to prioritize the time and effort necessary to help their children develop in the best possible way.

Teaching your child social skills will not only help them improve their relationships at home, but it will also help them communicate better with their friends, teachers, and other adults. 

Teaching early on is crucial because the earlier you introduce social skills to your child, the better.

What are Social Skills?

Social skills are various skills that a child learns when they interact with others in social settings. The skills can be divided into two major categories: cognitive and non-cognitive. Cognitive skills include the ability to understand and interpret social cues and the ability to perceive, understand and engage in conversations. Non-cognitive skills are about the total person of your child, including behavior, etiquette, motivation, self-confidence, personality, and self-esteem.

Why is it Important for Parents to Help Children with Social Skills?

Help Children with Social Skills

There are many reasons parents need to help their children with social skills. Here are some of the most important ones:

  • It can help the child’s self-esteem – Children with good social skills will have an easier time making friends and enjoy school and extracurricular activities more when they have good social skills. Children who struggle socially often have low self-esteem, resulting in them being unhappy with themselves.
  • It can increase a child’s motivation to succeed in school – Kids with strong social skills are more likely to succeed in school. They will be willing to ask questions and work hard for their goals. These children will also get along better with others and develop friendlier relationships at school and elsewhere, which is important for their academic growth and overall development.
  • It can improve your child’s leadership skills – Children who have better social skills will be more confident to take the lead in situations where leadership skills are necessary. They can work with other people towards a common goal and have the necessary skills to work with little supervision.
  • It can help children manage conflicts – Conflicts are another part of life. Children who can manage their anger and deal with conflict in a positive way can get along better with others and make good friends, both of which will help them succeed academically and otherwise.
  • It can help your child have a better feeling of belonging – Children who have good social skills are better equipped to interact with others and form relationships. These children are happier and more confident, which will make them feel as though they belong.

How To Improve Your Child’s Social Skills?

Social skills are essential skills your child needs to develop to succeed in life. There are many ways to help your child develop better social skills. But it is difficult to identify the suitable methods that will work best for your child because everyone’s upbringing is different. So, it is at this time that Montessori Academy enters to guide parents step by step on how to help children build good social skills.

At Montessori Academy, a primary part of our educational program focuses on helping children with their social skills. We understand that kids’ personalities evolve naturally at their own pace when supported in a mutually-respectful and nurturing environment that encourages thoughtful behavior and politeness.

This article will explore the seven most essential social skills for kids and the best ways to help your child develop them.

7 Most Essential Social Skills for Children

1. Listening

social skills

Listening is an essential social skill that children learn when interacting with others. It is something that no one can do without, and it is one of the first social skills that a child learns. How well a child listens impacts their ability to make friends, understand people, and pay attention in class, which are important for their success in life.

Your kid must grow up knowing how to listen to a teacher, the boss, and friends. This skill is crucial, and it’s the basic foundation of building out other good social skills. 

Ways To Practice It: 

Giving your little one many opportunities to practice listening can improve this skill. When reading a Montessori-friendly book to your children, try to stop and ask your children to pick up on the story and keep listening. Also, engage in conversations with them about what they have read.

2. Sharing

importance of sharing

The ability to share is a very important social skill, and it is one of the first skills that children learn. Your child needs to learn this skill because being able to share means that they can be friends with anyone they want, including people they meet at school or with their family members. When children can share, they establish good relationships with others who can help them grow and develop.

Ways To Practice It:

When you are working on this skill at an early age will make it easier to help your child develop good social skills. Children are able to learn the importance of sharing when they are just three years old. For example, when giving them a snack, ask them to share it with you. Praise them when they can share or give them some positive rewards.

3. Using Proper Manners

Proper Manners

The proper use of manners is very important for young children because it helps them develop self-discipline and social awareness from a very young age. Manner improves your child’s ability to get along with others and work well in groups, which are essential skills for school success and life success. Proper manners include saying thank you, please and table manners.

Ways To Practice It:

Be a good role model and practice the proper use of manners. When you eat at a restaurant, make sure you say “please” or “thank you.” As well, say “please” when asking your children to do something and then praise them when they get it right.

4. Following Directions

Following Directions

A child who can follow directions is able to work with others and be helpful. In many situations, directions are required, whether from a police officer or your teacher at school. Children who cannot follow directions fail to understand and respect the rules around them. They are very disorganized because they can’t understand the direction given.

Ways To Practice It:

You must start practicing this skill by giving your child directions when it is necessary. For example, if you take your child out for a walk, give them instructions about what to do or where to go. If you have a road trip coming up, let your children know where they need to be so they don’t get lost, and make sure that they are following any instructions you give them.

5. Cooperating

social skills

The term cooperating means working with others towards a common goal, such as cleaning, helping with homework, and making friends at school. Cooperating is a great way to build up your child’s self-esteem and sense of belonging. Children who can cooperate well with others will likely be happier and more successful in school.

Ways To Practice It:

When you are home, encourage your child to work together with their siblings to improve this skill. It applies whether they play a board game or do a craft project together. When they are finished doing it, praise them for how well they got along with their sibling! Also, don’t forget to discuss the importance of teamwork with them when you are in public, like at a shopping mall or park.

6. Making an Eye Contact

Making eye contact is a very important social skill for kids because it makes them comfortable with those around them. It helps kids express themselves well and show their feelings and thoughts through eye contact. It is important that kids learn to make proper eye contact because it plays an important role in positive communication and how they interact with others in social situations. They also use eye contact to determine if the person they are speaking to is interested in what they say.

Ways To Practice It:

When you are home, make sure you spend some time with your children. When talking with your kids, have a conversation that requires eye contact. For example, discuss things about their day or ask them about school and their friends. Also, when you are doing things together like watching a movie, keep eye contact with them to practice this important social skill.

7. Respecting Other’s Personal Space

respecting others personal space

Respecting others’ personal space is all about respecting their boundaries as well. It is a good social skill because it helps children learn that they need to ask permission from others before they do something if it is going to cross the other person’s boundaries. It includes giving hugs, touching, and making friends with them. Respecting the other person’s personal space will help them improve how they play with others and get along with others in general.

Ways To Practice It:

Teach kids to stand about an arm’s length away from other people when having conversations. When your children are standing in line, talk about how close they are to the person in front of them and encourage them to respect the other person’s personal space. Also, teach children from an early age that they need to ask permission from their siblings when they want to play with them. You may role-play different scenarios to help children practice describing appropriate personal space.

Final Thoughts

The list of social skills above is the most important that parents should focus on from a young age. They are all important for children to learn when they are at school, at home, and in public. By practicing these social skills, children will benefit greatly when it comes to their school and life success. So spend some time working on social skills with your children today!

We at Montessori Academy are committed to helping your child learn how to develop the social skills needed for success in school. Our programs are customized to support your child’s individual needs. We can help your child develop the core social skills needed for success in school from preschool through high school!

Contact us today!

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