Strategies to Develop Social Skills in Young Children



Social skills play an important role in your child’s development.Your little ones are going to face many challenges in this materialistic world. Developing social skills and interacting with people around is not only essential for a kid’s success but also it can make them happier and content.

Some kids are naturally more social than others. Nevertheless, we can always learn the art of socializing every single day of growing up. As a parent, it’s your duty to develop social skills in your little one, and you have to help them to interact with the world around them.

The Benefits of developing Social Skills

Whether social skills are taught in school or at home by parents, there are tons of benefits to doing so.

  • Teaching social skills will help kids to Communicate effectively.
  • They will learn the problem-solving skills.
  • It will be easier for them to Make friends.
  • They learn to Cooperate with others, practice active listening and adapt to different situations.
  • It will help kids to Utilize non-verbal cues, set boundaries, say “no” appropriately and ask for help when needed.

Overall, the effects of learning social skills last a lifetime for your kids.

How to develop social skills

This might sound a lot difficult, but in reality, it’s not! Here are a few tips you can try to help your kid develop the right social skills at an early age –

Encourage eye-contact

Eye-contacts play a key role in developing social skills and building confidence. And as a parent you have to help your kid master this art so as to help them get the right confidence level. With this being said, you can try games like “staring contest”, where you can tell your little one to talk about their favorite activity by doing eye contact directly with you. You can also look into their eyes firmly when they are telling you stories, or during play time.

Explain personal space

It is very important to help your children understand that everyone has a personal space or bubble. Let them know they’re also entitled to their own personal space and they have authority on their body. Do not pick them up or hug them without their permission. Teach children to do the same in return with others . This is very important for their social skills.

Teach them emotions

The very next essential aspect to build social skills is to help your child understand different emotions like anger, joy, excitement, anger, mischief, etc. To help with this, you can play the “identify the emotion” game, where your little one will recognise different emotions by the help of play cards.

Make them communicate

Let your children express their feelings verbal or non-verbal, and respond to social stimulus.  Practice asking and answering questions. Let your children communicate their needs, desires, beliefs and ideas. Help your kids to interact with others appropriately, to overcome shyness .

Teach them how to greet properly

Whenever there is any guest arriving at your place, teach your little one to greet them, and encourage them to start a conversation on their own. Also, make sure that you have taught your kid’s basic greeting words like hi, hello, whenever they will meet someone new.

Teach them Empathy

Children who have a better understanding of how others feel, can connect easily to others and form positive bonds. Talk about different situations with your child and ask how they feel. You can help in teaching empathy by making children focus on listening to what others are saying and then comprehend. It’s important for parents to be consciously aware of how they interact with others when your child is watching. 

You must Know Your Child’s Limits

Some children are shy, introverted and less social than others. It’s very important to understand your child’s need and time limits. Are they comfortable in large settings or small groups? Younger children and those with special needs not feel comfortable socializing for more than hour.

Fix a Play date 

Lastly, you can try keeping your little busy throughout the day by playing different social games. Try inviting their friends to your place and you can even plan play dates for kids. All this will surely take a lot of time but would help a lot in social development of your child.

When to seek outside support

Though every child develops social skills with their own pace. If your child does not seem to be developing socially there might be many reasons like genetic disabilities or autism. Talk to child psychiatrist or therapist. Recognize social delays and get treatment.

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12 Replies to “Strategies to Develop Social Skills in Young Children

  1. Social skills are developed over time and kids observe and learn quickly. Motivating them to play with friends, be gentle but firm about their choices and empathy will definitely make them grow better.

  2. Social skills are really important and your pointers are always doable. I think kids need to be taught how to begin small talk. I help many kids in doing that and it works .

  3. Teaching kids empathy and social skill are extremely important and I loved that you have shared this topic in the series!!

  4. Good manners, effective communication, being empathetic, are basic social needs that we need to teach children at an early age. I liked your ways to develop social skills in children.

  5. I feel play dates are fun way to develop proper social skills in kids. loved all the tips and suggestions. teaching kids about emotions is another important aspect for developing proper social skills in kids.

  6. One of the most important aspects of their personality is how well kids behave socially. Teaching social skills to them is the most significant part of their education. Agree with you, learning how to make eye contact, empathize, and understanding emotions are certainly the most valuable assets they will have as social beings.

  7. Wonderful ways to develop social skills among children. I like the eye contact game trick with kids. Also, play dates and greeting guest are the best tips to engage kids socially active.

  8. One of the most important posts for all parents, as we need to start developing the social skills to the kids at the tender age itself.

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