October 2008

Let’s Practice

Have you ever watched a coach make the team practice one isolated skill repeatedly? We are not only are children's parents, we are also our children's coaches. Sometimes we need to say to our child, "Hey, let's practice this."

My daughter loves to call her friends on the phone. Just thinking about calling a friend on the phone gives my son a stomachache. Whenever he wants to call to invite a friend over, I have to say to him, "Let's practice making the phone call." Then we practice all the possible things that could happen. What if the mom answers the phone? What if my son has to leave a message? What if the answer is no?

What other social situations may need practice and guidance? Here are some possibilities:

Being introduced to a teacher or another adult
Meeting and talking to a new adult
Dealing with a verbal or physical bully
Making a new friend
Approaching the new kid in school
Talking to the teacher about something bothering you

Social situations can easily be intimidating-for children and adults alike. A little bit of coaching and the opportunity to practice what to say and do will not only ease your child's anxiety but also increase self-confidence in future social situations.

This page can be found at http://kidscorner.reframemedia.com/parents/article/october-2008