What To Do With A Clinger

I was at the park with some friends and I noticed one of my friend’s little girls clinging for dear life to her dad’s leg while the other children played across the park.  I know this little girl to be a VERY sweet little one, but she is just naturally shy when it comes to social settings.

So, I walked over to her, knelt down to her eye level, and asked her what her favorite area of the park was.  She hesitated as she pointed to the swings.  Right then, I held out my hand, and I said “Why don’t we go together to the swings and see if we can find one friend that we can play with by the swings?”  She didn’t hesitate at all!  She grabbed my hand and we headed over to the swings together.

Then, I called one of her well-known playmates over to the swings, and I asked my shy little friend to “use her words” and ask that friend if she would like to swing with us.  She hesitated and I said it again.  On the third try she asked that friend to play with her, and the other playmate gladly accepted.

After that, I stayed around for another 5-10 minutes to spark activity ideas and conversation between them, and then walked away to let her play independent of my guidance for a little while, but I kept my eyes on her in case it looked like she needed more prompting.

I wanted to share this with all my Mommy Teachers because I don’t want us to loose sight of the teaching opportunities we have in developing our little ones SOCIAL skills as well as cognitive skills.  I hope this inspires you 🙂

If you have any similar stories or questions PLEASE share them with me via email: jessica (at) themommyteacher [dot] com or on my facebook page.

I borrowed this picture of my friend Casey and her kids because she is such an awesome Mommy Teacher who plays with her kids and teaches them social skills as well.

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1 Comment on What To Do With A Clinger

  1. Jos @ Organized Chaos
    May 11, 2011 at 10:54 pm (7 years ago)

    I love this post! Isn’t it so true that behavior sometimes HAS to be modeled…especially for those not as energetic/outgoing as others.

    Thank you for sharing this! Hopefully other Mommy Teachers out there will take heart and DO this with a timid one…There’s nothing wrong with being timid, but I certainly wouldn’t want to feel like that for the rest of my life.


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