There are certain social skills that children should develop as they mature. Understanding each of these skills can clue you in on the “success” of your child’s development. Noticing these skills can also be reassuring if you’re ever questioning the quality of your child’s school. Preschool is the fundamental stage for developing these social skills in your child, so a good program is essential to your child’s social wellbeing. Wondering what social skills are critical for children to develop? Keep reading to learn more about the most important social skills for children.
What Are Children’s Social Skills?
General social skills that teachers and parents look for in children are the ability to communicate needs, form bonds with others, and express emotions. Most children develop these skills through group play, which is why having that time is essential for your child’s development.
Some children have more natural social skills than others, so it’s perfectly normal if your child isn’t developing every social skill at the same pace as their peers. As long as they’re progressing in the majority of these skills, there isn’t much need to worry.
Important Social Skills for Children
Developing the right social skills in children is essential to having successful relationships and meaningful interactions later in life. The social skills children should learn differ at each stage of development.
- 0 to 6 months: At this age, a newborn can’t really speak, but there are still some important social skills that they can develop. From 0 to 6 months, a child should be able to make brief eye contact, laugh when playing, smile when approached by someone and go between calm and crying depending on its needs.
- 6 to 12 months: The social skills for this age bracket are similar to those for infants that are 0 to 6 months old. Children that are 6 to 12 months old should also be able to play a game like peekaboo, respond to facial expressions, and imitate adults.
- 1 to 2 years: At 1 to 2 years old, children can establish eye contact for a longer period of time. They should also be able to identify themselves in a mirror, say hello, goodbye, and please, and act out previously seen actions.
- 2 to 3 years: Children who are 2 to 3 years old can start to verbally communicate their wants and feelings, laugh along with others, and play with other children.
- 3 to 4 years: At this age, children’s social skills are becoming more advanced. Toddlers between the ages of 3 and 4 can now take turns with other children, talk about their feelings, and feel remorse if caught doing something wrong.
- 4 to 5 years: Kids who are 4 to 5 years old can start playing games with simple rules, play imagination games, and play in a group with up to 3 children.
- 5 to 6 years: At this stage of development, toddlers begin blossoming into children, so they should have hopefully mastered all previously mentioned social skills. Between the ages of 5 and 6, children will also be able to negotiate while playing, participate in well-organized play, and understand the difference between good and bad.
Tour Kids’ Corner
At Kids’ Corner, developing social skills in preschoolers is an important part of our curriculum. We utilize different strategies at each stage of development to ensure that your children are learning the appropriate social skills for their age. If you’re interested in learning more about our programs, schedule a tour of one of our campuses in Mesa, AZ, or Gilbert, AZ. We look forward to seeing you soon!