Elementary students and the social skills they require are a common matter I heard often. Even though social skills are essential for every human being who interacts with society, it is especially mandatory for elementary students.
The fact is that teaching and improving social skills since elementary age will make future adults more socially interactive.
Most parents and teachers often ask the question, what are the top social skills for elementary students? Therefore, I decided to deeply research the matter while stating a list of top social skills for elementary students which will be useful for both the parents and teachers.
I have listed the topics below that I discuss in this post. Feel free to jump straight to the one you are interested in.
Table of Contents
What are Social Skills?
Social skills are the interpersonal or soft skills that are used in social interaction. They are the skills needed to communicate with each other.
Social skills include both verbal as well as non-verbal communication patterns, and it creates relationships within the society. They are the things we do daily without even thinking when we talk, work, smile, walk, play, and in every social interaction.
Social skills are how we use our words, smile, body language to express our ideas or feelings effectively to others. They help us to develop good communication and relations with others while creating better attitudes regarding ourselves.
Since we all are in an interactive society, social skills are essential for all of us. It is impossible to live together with others without improving individual social skills.
Therefore, social skills must be developed since childhood. If not, kids will become awkward and cowardly.
Some examples of social skills
Some examples of social skills for elementary students are stated below.
- Good Communication
- Listen to others
- Respect others
- Being polite
- Wait for the turn
- Helping each other
- Conflict Resolution
- Maintaining good relations with others
Why Social skills important for elementary students?
Social skills are really important for elementary students since that age is the most significant period for them to socialize. Social skills should be taught and utilized in elementary students.
They are essential to build up good peer relationships and achieve more success in their education. It will prepare the child for their future in every aspect of their social life.
As elementary students, they need to create bonds with others, make friends, communicate, respond, and adapt to different environments. Social skills are important for them in these situations.
Further, they play a significant role in reducing mental stress in academic environments and getting rid of depressing situations.
Social skills are necessary for students in their cooperative team works, improve their leadership qualities, and support students to set and achieve their future goals, targets, and dreams.
They are important to enhance emotions, self attitudes, and academic success while preparing a qualified adult for future careers.
We can observe many children with no proper social skills easily become victims of negative behaviors. Those children are easily captured by traumatic social situations such as violence, drug usage, selling, sexual harassment, child prostitution, etc.
The students with good social skills are difficult to capture by these traumas since social skills learning enhances their positive attitude to identifying good and bad.
One of my friends always tries to raise her child confined to home with many rules by not allowing him to play with other kids or watching television. The child is always persuaded to study.
I noticed a massive difference in his character when compared to his peers. He is not communicating with others well, does not have friends, takes too long to respond, and fears, and is shy in society. So it can be witnessed that this child lacks social skills, and it has affected his character more than we think.
Therefore, “social skills for elementary students” is an important topic. In order to overcome a child and a future adult with such deficiencies, social skills are important and must be maneuvered in their elementary ages.
Family, School, Daycare centers and the Community must be responsible for helping kids develop their social skills.
Why does my child lack social skills?
It is natural to have a child with a lack of social skills. A child with a lack of social skills can be identified through several symptoms.
Poor listening, weak concentration, less identification of gestures and body language, non-adaption, unusual responding, interrupt others, less politeness, self-centeredness, lack of imagination, and empathy are some of them.
- Health related issues
Autism Spectrum Disorder, Attention- Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, Social Communication Disorder, and Non-verbal Learning Disability are some health matters associated with the lack of social skills of children.
Mental health issues such as depression and anxiety too can cause the lack of social skills of a child. In these cases, parents must identify the situation of the child and should follow necessary remedies.
- Environmental Factors
On the other hand, similar to the case of my friend’s child, social skill weaknesses can occur due to some factors.
Environmental factors play a significant role in this case. In the case of that boy, he has a stressful environment with no entertainment or relaxation. It makes him uncomfortable and awkward as his life is full of forceful education.
It drove him to the phase of no social skills. If the home environment is filled with negative attitudes, conflicts between parents, bullying, slum locations with abuses, they are not suitable for a child to build up his social skills.
Children with such an environment act in different ways than others with fear, aggression, or shyness.
- Competency deficiency
The difficulty of some children in identifying signals and languages also creates a lack of social skills. Proper education of verbal, non-verbal as well as written skills will minimize this deficit. Lack of knowledge and competency deficiency also causes weak social skills.
- Hurtful memories
In addition, past experiences play a significant role in the lack of social skills of a child. When some incidents or experiences were deeply entered into the mind of a child, it is difficult for them to engage in social skills.
Parents must have firm attention to their children. It is better to make them practice good social skills since their childhood than raising a child with a lack of social skills.
Best 10 basic social skills that kids need
Social skills play a significant role in the socialization process of a kid. Here, I’m ready to answer the most frequent question of parents and teachers; what are the most important social skills for elementary students?
Since social skills cover a wide scope, I hereby stated the top 10 social skills which should be achieved by elementary students.
- Proper Communication
Proper communication is a basic social skill that a kid needs. The communication skills differ as verbal, non-verbal, and written. Every child begins to learn a language when he grows up. The proper usage of a language to verbal and written communication is mandatory to interact with others.
In addition, correct use of non-verbal communication is important. Gestures, body language, and facial expressions are included here, and incorrect use of them will give a completely different message.
Therefore, from childhood, kids need to improve communication skills to interact with society and to build up relationships with others.
- Politeness and Manners
Being polite and behaving in manners is a mandatory fact which a child should learn. Using polite words, acting kindly, following good manners, and helping others will create a kid with a good interactive performance in society.
There are several types of manners, such as table manners, telephone manners, and behavioral manners, which will differ with the situation and place.
Greetings are a critical skill for everyone. It is better to teach kids how to greet others on different occasions.
Simple things such as Good Morning, Good Afternoon, Have a nice day, Stay safe, Goodbye and Self-introduction should be used properly, and it will create positive attitudes.
- Cooperation and Sharing
Cooperation and Sharing are needed for a kid within the family, school, and society. It is important to make friends and to engage well with them. Cooperation and Sharing need to collaborate, help others, and fulfill a fair share of our own work.
Since this is an essential professional skill, it is better to practice it from childhood. Then children will improve to work with others with no conflicts, to take responsibilities by sharing work and resources.
- Good Listening
Listening skills are really important for kids. Kids first learn things from listening. To concentrate, engage actively with others, and educate, listening should be developed.
Also, a kid with good social ability must follow the guidelines and directions of elders, and for that, good listening is needed.
- Respecting others
A kid must learn to respect elders and everyone around him. When communicating also, he needs to wait until his turn and allow others to respond.
Kids need to identify the differences between each other and should respect them.
- Following directions
Skill in following directions is essential for kids as it develops their understanding, identification of signals, and concentration. It helps them in playing, studying, and completing work on time.
- Respecting Personal space
It is important to make the child aware of personal space, which everyone needs to feel comfortable with.
Kids should practice maintaining personal space when interacting with others. A kid must understand that consent is needed in crossing another person’s personal space.
- Good personal hygiene
Personal hygiene includes cleanliness, being neat and well dressed. Appearance is the major factor in creating the first impression.
Therefore, to interact well with others and create positive impressions, kids should learn how to maintain their hygiene pleasant to others.
- Self Control
Self-control teaches kids to make good decisions, control their emotions and behaviors, control interrupting, face problems, endure difficulties, and wait until the turn.
Are smart kids socially awkward?
Smart kids are different from other kids. They are intelligent, and their brains work overdrive more than other kids. Most of the time, smart kids are book-oriented or centered on their interested field.
Therefore, when socializing, they are awkward and struggling to interact with peers. Their thoughts and interests are different from other peers, and it makes it difficult to have friends.
Smart kids favored a chat with an adult related to the same interesting field as him rather than playing with other kids. Their knowledge and vocabulary are complex while questioning everything.
They are emotional, intense and their competitiveness is viewed by others as arrogant or nerdy. It makes smart kids isolated in society. Accordingly, most of the smart kids are introverts who lack social skills and are socially awkward.
Parents can support their children to get rid of this situation. Parents must understand their kid and his mentality well. Smart kids should be taught basic social skills such as manners, smiling, eye contact, self-control, and personal space.
The kid should be encouraged to engage in entertainment activities such as sports, playing with peers, and watching television. These things will support smart kids to get rid of social awkwardness and to interact with others.
Conclusion – Top social skills for elementary students
We have defined the social skills and identified which abilities can be considered as social skills. Here, a special focus was driven to the social skills important for elementary students.
To understand it further, the importance of social skills for elementary students and the reason for the lack of social skills were explored.
Then, I listed 10 top basic social skills that a kid needs. Finally, the social awkwardness of smart kids was discussed. So, throughout the text, I need to highlight the importance of social skills for a child and make them aware of those skills which elementary students need.
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