Improving Your Child’s Social-Emotional Growth Through Board Games
In the fast-paced, high tech world of childhood, girls and boys are much more likely to reach for the iPad and Xbox than a set of dice. Although, technology can provide immense growth in your child’s life, it can also delay important social-emotional learning that the old-fashioned board game has to offer.
Below are some important reasons to bring back the board game to work on social-emotional growth:
Practice Social Skills
Board games are a fantastic outlet to practice turn-taking, rule following and positive sportsmanship. Depending on your child’s age, choose an appropriate game to begin the process of reading the rules, modeling the steps of a turn, and providing examples of positive praise and compliments. Commend your child as they begin to integrate this set of skills into their regular play!
Enhance Flexible Thinking
Board games also allow for children to work on improving their frustration tolerance. Many parents can often relate to observing their children shutting down, becoming angry, or walking away from the game after a missed turn, wrong move, or misunderstanding. Flexible thinking skills to practice include compromising, negotiating, and problem-solving. Taking a break and calm breathing can also be helpful strategies. Practicing how to handle frustration in the context of a board game will help children to better handle frustration in other areas of their lives.
- Incorporate your child’s favorite stuffed animal or Lego character as an additional player in the board game when other family members are unavailable.
- Cooperative games are a helpful way to practice teamwork and can prevent competition from getting in the way of practicing rule-following and turn-taking skills.
- Involve your child in picking out the board game in order to increase their interest in this new activity.
NSPT offers services in Bucktown, Evanston, Highland Park, Lincolnwood, Glenview, Lake Bluff, Des Plaines, Hinsdale and Milwaukee! If you have questions or concerns about your child, we would love to help! Give us a call at (877) 486-4140 and speak to one of our Family Child Advocates!