Socialization process starts from the first month of your baby’s life. A one month old toddler likes to be touched and can even copy your gestures and mimics. Babies between 6 and 12 months start to be interested in some interaction with other kids. Older ones start talking and effectively communicating with parents and other people as well as being able to make friendship and really enjoy other kids company.
5 tips for nurturing your toddler’s social skills
1. Keep in mind that all toddlers learn through repetitive teaching. Spend a lot of time with your smallest one while playing, talking to him/her and observing his/her reactions. Copy baby’s mimics and teach him/her some gestures. Do not forget about inviting guests such as your relatives and friends. Be patient if your baby initially is shy or a little bit afraid of them.
2. Find friends for your baby in your neighborhood – remember that company of other babies positively affects interpersonal skills. However, you must be also aware that sometimes spending time with peers can cause also bad behavior of your baby. That is the reason that parents play the most important role in monitoring their child’s emotions and teaching them different social skills at home.
3. Maintain a loving and warm atmosphere at home, talk about your feelings and your baby’s feelings, talk to your older kid about his/her emotions and interactions with others. In short, your baby should experience positive emotions at home and you could help him/her to understand both positive and negative emotions.
4. Keep your babies active and find some “baby classes” such as music, painting or baby care ones. What about toddlers – parents groups? Parents can talk, make friendships and generally enjoy each other while their babies start learning how to play and cooperate with other kids. We recommend also baby swimming classes – the smallest ones absolutely love it!
5. Choose games and other activities which encourage your toddler’s social skills, especially empathy and understanding other people’s needs: doctor games for kids, baby care games, dolls, etc.
Baby games for girls and boys: improve your toddler’s social and emotional skills development
We strongly recommend different doctor games for kids and baby caring games, which teach your child how to take care of others, how other people feel and how to help them. Generally speaking your baby can develop empathy and have fun at the same time. The most important lesson for your small toddler playing doctor games is that there are also bad emotions and that you should support others and help them when they experience any difficulties. Taking care of the doll/virtual baby or other game character can help your baby to understand the role of parents and also their emotions towards their kids.
Remember: talk to your baby about emotions which a game character and your baby are experiencing while playing. Describe the situation in details and compare it to some real situations, for example when you were taking care of your small one having fever, being in bad mood etc. Being responsible for somebody is a great starting point for different conversations between you and your kid about feelings (love, friendship), and positive emotions such as happiness and negative ones, e.g. fear.
Free doctor games for kids:
Some games target mainly girls (such as Barbie doctor games), but plenty of doctor games online are also appropriate for small boys.
Baby Carrying Games and other activities
Free online baby carrying games: Girls Games
Imagine Babyz 3D: observe baby’s development stages, hug them and talk to them. You can enjoy very realistic great 3D graphics.
Check out also different dolls for girls – their look is very realistic. Our favorite one – a doll which looks like a living baby! What about a baby doll which behaves like a real baby?
Your kid has to take care of different needs of his/her “baby”, such as preparing food or changing diapers. A doll can speak and shake her head to express what she wants or what she does not want. Your child would love a Baby Alive Bitsy Burpsy Baby Doll – she can drink, burps and does much more!
Be careful and check all free online games thoroughly as some of them are not appropriate for kids!
Still need more information? Check out also really helpful books about a baby development.
You may be also interested in Painting games for kids – boost creativity and improve manual skills of your child.