Communication Skills Kids Need To Learn That They Won’t Get In School
Communication is one of the most valuable skills a person can have. We can’t trade or understand one another without the joint understanding of communication. School doesn’t teach kids about how to talk to one another. Show your child how to be a strong communicator by teaching them these skills:
- Eye Contact: Eye contact tells someone that you’re confident, paying attention, and interested in what they are saying. Too much eye contact can do the opposite. It can tell the person that you are romantically interested in them which comes across as off-putting. Or it can be a sign of aggression. The difference is a few seconds. Psychologists have narrowed it down to about 6 seconds to be exact. Blink or glance in a different direction to break the tension. Without proper eye contact, people don’t feel comfortable talking with you. If others don’t know how to take you, then the less they will want to communicate with you. Open yourself up to cover station by maintaining eye contact with the speaker.
- Handshake: The other indicator of confidence is the handshake. A firm handshake goes a long way, especially in business. If you can look someone in the eye and grasp their hand, it tells them that they can trust you. A lax handshake indicates that you are weak in other areas of your life, too.
- Knowing Your Audience: Before you start running your mouth, know who you are speaking to. If you are speaking to your boss, you’ll dress up your conversation to display more respect. If you’re talking to friends, then you’ll be more relaxed in your conversation. Know how to say the same things with varying amounts of respect.
- Conducting Yourself in A Group: Understanding how to conduct yourself when more than one person is speaking can be a delicate situation. Parents usually set the precedent by telling kids to not interrupt when two other people are speaking. That stays true throughout life. When two others are speaking, you don’t interrupt unless there is a major emergency.
- What Information Needs to Be Shared, and What Doesn’t: Not everyone needs to know everything about you. There is a finesse to learning how to communicate what and to whom. Different people will know different parts of you. Over time you’ll learn what to share with whom. If you share too much too soon, it can create a false sense of closeness and/or awkwardness. Take your time and divulge parts of you as it’s appropriate.
- Body Language: One of the biggest pieces of communication is your body language. 95% of what you say is nonverbal. Turning towards someone, smiling, and keeping a lax stance tells the other person that you are interested and not a threat. When your body language is engaged with someone else, your words don’t matter nearly as much. How you move will tell everyone what they need to know.
Sure, your words matter, but the way that you say it says more. Your tone, body language, and eye contact will tell someone about your intentions with the words that you say. No matter where you are, you’ll need to communicate with someone. Teach your children good skills to be successful in life.