You have books and the “what to expect” series to help you raising your children in a way that stimulates their social and emotional intelligence. Your parents had their parents, their instincts, and their elders to help them along.
There is a huge change in parenting roles from the aloof dads of yesterday to today’s fathers being best buddies to their children. But what has not changed is how a child blossoms with the grandparents’ different style of handling situations. While your child might not always listen to you, your parents’ experience in raising kids can be a wonderful addition to the emotional and moral development in children.
Secrets for Social and Emotional Development in Children
Remember, your parents raised you successfully! And as parents, the responsibility and the daily living was as overwhelming to them then as it is to you now! As grandparents, they are now more relaxed, and are eager to do new things and do their bit in the child’s life. And children, too, get the advantages of another pair of adults who love them. Here are some secrets that grandparents are great at when it comes tosocial and emotional development in children:
- Encourage responsibility. Grandparents know that moral development in children can be taught in every day situations rather than long lectures. When your child spills juice, you could get into a tizzy with cleaning, washing, and rinsing. Here’s what your parents would probably do instead – a grandmother would encourage the child to admit their carelessness, teach the child to mop and rinse, and make the cleaning up process an educational game too. She might also be a lot more understanding that getting messy is a part of growing up.
- Encourage confidence. Remember standing nervously waiting for your turn to give the speech in front of the school? Remember your dad sitting there with his eyes shining with pride? Remember your mother mumbling prayers to herself, giving you the confidence that they are watching over you? They will probably sit in the audience and do the same for your children, giving them the confidence and emotional intelligence to stand tall, even if your kids are nervous or scared.
- Encourage life skills. We might be a bit too protective or indulgent of our children. Often, visiting grandma is where children learn how to pick up after themselves, how to keep things tidy, and how to make their beds. Or even to cross the road!
- Encourage listening. A patient grandma will always be ready to hear about the goal they hit or how hard the test was. These conversations give the child a sense of security and trust. Learning to listen to others is an important part of social intelligence!
Activities that Stimulate Social Intelligence
Spending time together can bring a new dimension to the relationship between your parents and your kids, and is good for your little ones’social intelligence. Here are a few things grandparents can do when the grandkids come calling:
- Encourage going out. Get your parents to visit a museum or a zoo with your kids. This will be interesting and educational for everyone!
- Encourage fun activities. You’re never too old for Scrabble (formerly called Spellofun) or Monopoly. And your kids can teach their grandparents Pictionary and Uno! Grandparents can devise their own memory games and learning games for kids out of a bag of old coins or marbles, too.
- Encourage cooking together. Ask your mum to give some dough to your little sculptor so that he or she can make some cute sculptures like animal faces. The mess can always be cleaned up, and the memories you are creating are priceless.
Let grandparents and children create some beautiful memories with these activities – all while training their social and emotional intelligence.