Which Skills: Social, Emotional and Personal Interaction.
What are they?
The social – emotional area of development in toddlers can be explained as early mental health. As a baby becomes a young toddler a sense of self-awareness begins to evolve.
A sense of independence and the ability to manage separately to others around them develops.
Although, learning to share, communicate and interact with others is an ongoing process.
Why are they important?
If toddlers experience loving relationships they will learn how to form positive friendships and manage their emotions.
This becomes especially important when learning how to cope with disappointment.
Through such supportive relationships, the capacity for building trust, compassion, empathy and the understanding of right and wrong (conscience) can flourish.
How do you develop these skills and what are they commonly used for?
As toddlers become ever more interested with their peers and others, it is essential to support them to understand that others may have differing thoughts and feelings from their own.
This will help them to develop empathy – the ability to imagine what another is feeling – which is a fundamental part of a balanced relationship or friendship.
Some key areas to support and encourage your toddlers social and emotional development are…
Becoming a confident problem-solver by asking and answering questions. Encourage ‘why’!
Opportunities to play with peers, although at this stage your toddler may be more likely to play alongside others (parallel play).
At this stage toddlers begin simple pretend play, encourage attempts to imitate what role models do… pretend cooking, pretend driving or answering the phone.
Learn to understand and manage their emotions. This may manifest itself initially through temper tantrums as your toddler may not have the understanding or language skills to manage attempts at independence.
Clear, consistent boundaries are crucial at this time to enable your toddler to establish their position within their ‘world’.
If you need a hand or have any questions, feel free to leave them below and I will be more than happy to help you out…