Parents, we have great news about your child’s socialization! You, Dad and Mom, are the most powerful agents of socialization in your child’s life! Yes, children do love playing with other children, that is true. Where children learn the most critical social skills, however, is from interacting on a day to day basis at home with parents and caretakers.
Want your child to grow up to become socially adept and comfortable in conversation with adults? Talk with your child today! Discuss the weather, daily activities, upcoming holidays and events, and community news. Show your child how to be a great communicator by showing how it’s done! Parents who regularly engage children in social conversations tend to raise children with bigger vocabularies and a better grasp of the English language.
Parents are also able to maintain the rules of your family culture during conversation. Little friends on the playground are not able to offer your child that benefit. How many times have we heard a little one ask something like, “Hey, Daddy, what does it mean to cuss the corn?” The parent innocently asks, “Where did you hear about that, Johnny?” and little Johnny answers “My friend Suzie said her mother cusses the corn before cooking it for dinner!”
In this case, Suzie was confusing the word husk with cuss. Children are more likely to confuse or mispronounce words. Additionally, Johnny’s father might not think his child is ready to learn about what cuss means. While no serious harm was done in this simple interaction, it does demonstrate some of the challenges inherent in depending upon little ones from the neighborhood to socialize your child. Spend time talking with your child at the dinner table, while playing games, or just hanging around the house as a family! You will be amazed at what social skills your child will learn … from YOU Dad and Mom!
Children are the gift of our future.