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Teaching social skills by asking questions

  1. When our children’s behaviour appears to be heading towards hitting or hurtful words we first need to capture their attention by saying such statements as “Stop” or “It’s not OK for you to …”
  2. Secondly, we can ask a question, for instance:
  • “What else do you think you can do to sort this out?”
  • “This looks like a problem; can you think of a better way to fix it?”
  • “Do you need some time by yourself to calm down?”
  • “Remember our rule, this is a no hitting place, what other way can you tell her how you feel?”
  1. Thirdly, it may be helpful for our child or children to calm down first before we go to number 2. When they are calm they can then think clearer about how to respond more appropriately.

We may need to help them to calm down by teaching them calming and soothing strategies. e.g. drinking water, chewing gum (for older children) or deep breathing.

Remember – the ways we teach our child to calm down need to be strategies that we also use to calm down.

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