Getting a child to open up can sometimes be difficult. Pressing the child with questions is counterproductive as it triggers their self defense mechanism. When the child does not open up, they are more difficult to teach and learning opportunities diminish.
- Ensure you are always attentive:
Letting the child speak, listening to them, and reflecting what they say back to them allows the child to understand that they can speak openly and safely in the company of people who are willing to listen to them without pressure or judgement.
- Making yourself available:
Create a safety zone to help build trust. Since children do not have daily agenda for themselves, this allows you to be there when the child is comfortable enough to open up of their own. Trying to make children talk on the parent’s or the educator’s schedule can often have the opposite effect.
- Talk while the child is engaged in an activity:
Children who are engaged in an activity have shown a willingness to speak and open up more as they are distracted with an activity. This can be when they are drawing, painting, or solving a puzzle. It provides a way for them to speak up without feeling directly confronted and forced.
In order to create that safe zone for your child to open up to you will require patience, compassion, and a solid understanding of child psychology.
College of Allied Educators offers our Diploma in Learning Disorders Management and Child Psychology programmes to help you understand your child or the child in your care to more effectively help in their learning and development.
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