Saturday, March 25, 2017
Structured Activities and Socialization
Peer interactions become more complex as children grow and can serve as a vital function to promote pro-social skills. For example, when my child was in high school she had a friend that thought they had to do everything together. They had to like the same things and she started to tell my daughter who she should be. This friend didn't realize my daughter was a completely different person from this friend. They had to be in constant communication with one another when they weren't together telling each other everything. They had to like the same things, feel the same way about teachers and parents etc. My daughter got tired of being told who to be and this friendship became an unhealthy one for her to be in. She finally ended the friendship when the friend told her what a horrible friend she was because my daughter wouldn't tell her everything that was going on in her life and therefore tell her everything. This peer interaction helped my daughter grow and promote pro-social skills as she told this friend they were no longer friends and why.
Without the opportunity for routine contact with peers in formal and informal settings, the formation of friendships isn't possible. Child care, playgroups, and community programs provide instruments for promoting children's interactions and socialization skills. The attitudes and beliefs of a child's parents play an important role in managing a child's experiences. Parents initiate pathways by selecting environments for children in their early years. Depending on the environments parents choose to put their children in and what resources are available in those environments the opportunities for social interaction and friendships may differ for children depending on geographic region.
Socialization is a process. It's a process that requires many avenues and children need guidance from family, community, and friends to help them learn the rules of socialization. Guiding and teaching a child to learn socialization skills is when the saying, "It takes a village to raise a child," is very true.