This article was inspired by a friend; He said to me “I like the way you communicate with your boy, My brother just yells and screams at his boy.”
There is scientific evidence a baby in the mum’s womb are learning to identify communication via touch and sound. Therefore from birth, parents should begin teaching their children basic communication skills.
I am personally big on communication, I love to network, talk to everyone i meet, ask questions and learn new stuff, (got this from my dad). I am a big believer in communication and now it is my turn to teach my children.
This can be easily done by conversing daily with your children. – For example, When i get home from work i start a conversation by asking about his day, what did you do today? What did you learn today? or what did you do to help mum today at home? All i am doing here is laying a foundation for good communication for when he gets older.
This is how i Communicate with my 4 Year Old? – (So he learns from me how to communicate with others.)
1) Make eye contact. – When i speak to him i establish eye contact with him.
2) Use clear & correct speech. – (This is something i am working on personal, I use a lot of slang and do sometimes talk fast.) But when i speak to him i pace my sentence so he understands and i focus on using good grammar.
3) Ask open ended questions – such as “What did you do at preschool?” “What did you learn today?” (avoid yes/no questions)
4) Never interrupt – I always let him finish his sentence then i add to the conversation.
5) Listen Listen Listen – I always show that i am listening and i ask questions back. This shows good listening skills to him.
6) Use body language – I face him and show open body language.
7) Always end conversations pleasantly – I always try to end the conversation on a happy note, with a smile on his face or a hug.
This conversation only goes for about 5 minutes: this is how it goes.
I start a conversation with by asking – What did you do at pre-school today? (Here i have made eye contact, asked an open question and i am using open body language) He is responding. (I am listening, showing interest, nodding my head.) I ask another questions – What did you learn today? He responds, and so on……. I end the conversation by asking him to tell me about his favourite activity he did today at pre-school, It always puts a smile on his face.
I am not perfect, this took me a while to get to this level and i am still learning everyday, I am also learning what works and what does not work.