For Parents: Teaching Your Shy Child to Socialise

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Most children develop social sChildkills easily, learn to play on their own or with other children without prompting and become independent through time. There are also kids, however, who don’t adjust as quickly. Don’t worry. You just need to learn a few steps to handle your child’s shyness.

Helping Your Child Get Along with a Playmate

Your child is probably happy playing alone, tinkering with his toys and mumbling to himself. Sometimes, he might call your attention to something he deems an achievement. Then he goes back to his play area after earning your acknowledgement.

Introducing another child to the scene, however, may not be as easy as giving your little one a new toy. To help your kid adjust, talk to another parent in the neighbourhood who has a child of the same age as yours. Tell them about what you’re trying to accomplish. Set a playdate at your place. Your kid may adjust more quickly at your home. Give them a little space as they play, but don’t let them fight or become frustrated or bored. Take the ‘borrowed’ child home if this happens. If not, let this setup go on for a few more scheduled dates.

Teaching Your Child to Become Independent

When you think your kid is ready to move on, it’s time to arrange for your child to visit his friend at his friend’s home. Get the other parent’s approval. Work with your child until you can just ‘shadow’ him as he goes to his friend’s house. Hide behind a tree or fence to make him feel as if he’s on his own, thus building his confidence.

Nudging Your Child Out of the Comfort Zone

It’s OK to convince your child to get out of his comfort zone once in a while. Take him and his new friend to the playground. Moduplay suggests scouting the neighbourhood for a playground that has new and safe play equipment, not those rusty or dirty items that could hurt children. Don’t leave the kids there. Watch them from a distance. Make a picnic out of it; invite the playmate’s parents.

Your child needs guidance, but in time they will learn that making friends is more natural than they initially thought. They will fall and commit blunders now and then, but mistakes are a part of childhood. The adventure is more worthwhile if you know your role as a parent.

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