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How social are your kids?

Posted by on Jun. 26, 2012 at 11:02 AM
  • 10 Replies

Are you kids social or are they shy? Have they always been this way? Here are some tips to help them be more social when they are little. 

Show them the way. Baby is always watching you and your behavior, so be an example of friendliness in front of your child, suggests Sara Lise Raff, an educational consultant. For example, if you go to religious services each week, greet the celebrant and introduce him or her to your child. At playdates, you can even engage her friends in small talk ("I love your new doll, Emily. What's her name?"). Kids love to mimic their parents' behavior, so seeing you at ease with others will show her there's nothing to fear.

Stick with small groups. Babies might feel overwhelmed around larger groups. At this stage, it's best to limit your child's playdates to only a few pals. Then, as your child gets older and starts to feel more comfortable around other tots, you can begin planning dates with larger groups or sign him up for classes where there will be more children around.

Take it easy. Research shows that kids whose parents push them too far, too quickly, end up withdrawing even more. If your baby seems anxious around new people, don't force the situation. Just try again at another time.

Don't overprotect. It's also important that you give your child opportunities to succeed in new situations. Help your little one take gentle steps in the direction of achievement and accomplishment. If she shows some resistance to social situations, a gentle nudge might include saying "Let's just go take a look." As Baby becomes more comfortable, you can back off a bit and simply follow her lead.

by on Jun. 26, 2012 at 11:02 AM
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by on Jun. 26, 2012 at 11:08 AM
1 mom liked this

My 9 year old son is a little bit slower to warm up to new people but my 5 year old daughter is a little social butterfly. 

Yesterday we took them to a music show at the library and she was standing there as people were leaving asking them to please come play with her again some other day. She loves people. 

by on Jun. 26, 2012 at 11:23 AM

My kids are both very social. They have never had a problem making friends with other kids (or adults). There have been times I wish they were a little less social, but I am glad that they are not like some kids I know who are terrified of people. 

by on Jun. 26, 2012 at 2:06 PM
My 1st and 3rd kids are very social. 2nd and I are totally not so we have to be proactive about scheduling in social activities in moderation.
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by Meghan on Jun. 26, 2012 at 3:39 PM
Ds1 is shy but ds2 is very social
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by on Jun. 26, 2012 at 3:40 PM

Mine are social.

by Betty on Jun. 27, 2012 at 12:10 AM

my kids are both! they can be very social at times and they can be very shy at times. dd is a bit more social than ds. they have always been like that.

by on Jun. 27, 2012 at 12:10 AM

My son is very social, he can interact with infants all the way up adults. He makes friends with just about anyone that will talk to him. Ihome school him. He is the perfect example why I laugh when people say  home schooled kids are "socially awkward."  He is far from it.

by on Jun. 27, 2012 at 1:49 PM
Natalli is shy at first but then very social while DS is not social at all
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by Bethany on Jun. 27, 2012 at 10:05 PM

They're both pretty social, although DD is going through a little bit of separation anxiety (she just turned 1) and DS never really seemed to....

by on Jun. 27, 2012 at 11:05 PM

My 4yr old daughter is goofy. Sometimes she is super outgoing and friendly, other times she acts shy. I think the shy thing is usually an act though. There have been times when she has acted super shy & clingy then when I ask her what was up later, she says "mommy I just wanted to be shy today!"

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