HOW TO HELP YOUR SHY CHILD

Your Baby & Toddler - - Baby Files: Toddler -

BE A ROLE MODEL. If you act and ap­pear con­fi­dent when in­ter­act­ing with oth­ers, even in your day-to-day en­coun­ters with cashiers at the shop­ping mall, or over the tele­phone, your child will fol­low your ex­am­ple. When chat­ting to strangers, make eye con­tact.

WATCH HIM CLOSELY. Get to know how your child be­haves in dif­fer­ent sit­u­a­tions. Be aware of the times that he is more shy than nor­mal. Once you un­der­stand what makes him anx­ious, you can talk about it and fig­ure out ways to over­come his anx­i­ety. Re­mem­ber, you can­not live vi­car­i­ously through your child. A child that is un­der pres­sure to per­form aca­dem­i­cally can be­come with­drawn be­cause he is afraid of dis­ap­point­ing a par­ent. PRAC­TISE HOW TO ACT DUR­ING DIF­FI­CULT SIT­U­A­TIONS US­ING ROLE PLAY. He might think that it’s silly to prac­tise how to greet some­one at a birth­day party, but it will make him feel more self-as­sured. An­other so­lu­tion is to talk about what sit­u­a­tions make him feel anx­ious. Come up with so­lu­tions on how to over­come it to­gether. YOU CHILD MAY NOT BE SHY OR WITH­DRAWN,

but if you are con­stantly telling other peo­ple that he is, he will be­gin to be­lieve you. Tell some­one what a great child he is while he is within earshot. When you get home, de­lib­er­ately tell your part­ner how well he in­ter­acted with his peers. In­volve him in de­ci­sion mak­ing, es­pe­cially when it comes to how to han­dle the prob­lems he faces in his life. A friend could be hurt­ing him at school. In­volve him in find­ing a so­lu­tion to the prob­lem. DON’T DOM­I­NATE OR OVER­POWER HIM.

If he feels dom­i­nated in his re­la­tion­ship with his par­ents now he could de­velop a ten­dency to dom­i­nate other re­la­tion­ships when he is an adult.

Mega Bloks Blaze & The Monster Ma­chines Monster Truck As­sort­ment, R230 Fisher-price South Africa, lead­ing toy re­tail­ers

Wooden tip­per truck, R850 Dream Time Toys, www. dream­time­toys.co.za

Princess head­phones, R150 Ack­er­mans

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