Social development refers to a series of stages, in which a child develops personality traits that will enable him or her interact with other people in an appropriate manner. During social development stages, the child develops attributes, characters and skills that make him or her socially competent person in future (Bjorklund, 2011). Social development entails development of abilities or capacities to get well along with other people.
Children usually develop social skills such as good rapport, ability to maintain good relationships as well as help others through learning from childhood experiences, from what other people are doing and teaching, from elderly relatives such as parents and siblings. In addition, children develop social skills, including good behaviors, from continuous interactions with other people.
Strategies for Fostering Development of Social Skills in Children
A number of strategies can be used by parents and teachers in fostering social development amongst children. First and foremost, parents and teachers can make keen observations on the child’s behaviors; this entails looking for positive characters exhibited by the child and encouraging them. Similarly, the parents can observe and discourage the undesirable qualities (Bjorklund, 2011). By so doing, the child grows up knowing, which characters or behaviors are bad, and which are good.
Secondly, parents and teachers can closely monitor the conduct of children; this will enable selectively encouraging good characters and behaviors amongst children as well as discouraging unfavorable social skill that children might develop.
Thirdly, parents should develop good understanding of children’s developments process. Such knowledge will help them understand why children may exhibit certain social skills and not others. Fourthly, through adequate communication, parents and teachers should tell children about the disadvantages of possessing bad behaviors. They should teach their children how to deal with other people and explain the benefits of developing good relationships with others.
Last but not least, parents and teachers should deliberately support children in developing good social skills by providing advice on best social skills and moderate punishments to shun bad ones. Parents can praise children, encouraging them in good behavior. In conclusion, it is important to assist children in developing good social skills. Lack of proper development of social skills may lead to behavioral delinquency, poor attention and poor self-concept. In certain cases, children may isolate themselves from other people, become aggressive and feel depressed (Siegler & Alibali, 2005).
Furthermore, children develop social skills very rapidly at their early stages of life, it is thus important for parents and teachers to monitor and foster desirable social skills.