5 social skills every school student must develop

In schools, children not only discover how to read and write, but also learn how to develop social skills. Social skills can be defined as the skills we, as humans use to communicate and interact with one another, both verbal and non-verbal. Although there is no formal system in place where teachers can grade students based on their social skills, an appropriate parameter to gauge the same can be how a student behaves and interacts with his/her peers on a day-to-day basis.

Failing at social skills can be way more painful than failing at a curriculum test. This is because social skills play a vital role in ensuring mental and emotional well-being of children. So let’s deep dive into 5 such social skills every school student must develop.

1. Greet willingly
Every social interaction begins with greetings. These greetings not only entail phrases such as Hello” or How are you?”but also include non-verbal gestures, facial expressions and tone of the voice. In other words, its not what you say but how you say that lets people know how you truly feel about them. Therefore, students must pay close attention to non-verbal aspects of greeting since they are just as important as spoken words.

2. Listen well
In order to maintain and positively engage in a conversation, it is important to listen well and actively. It not only helps you understand the other persons point of view in one go but also eliminates any confusion in conversation. Today, students with relevant social skills would be quick to identify their listener and then frame the response accordingly. Therefore, it is important to not le anything fall on deaf ears.

3. Empathise
Empathy is the ability to acknowledge and share the feelings of one another. Although it is similar to perspective taking, an empathetic person is able to exactly feel what the other person feels. In other words, empathy allows students the ability to instantly connect with one another and therefore, respond to situations calmly and appropriately.

4. Cultivate problem solving abilities
Problems and obstacles are a part-and-parcel of every social interaction. Although it is not the ‘difficulties but the ‘reaction to these that determines how good are the analytical abilities of a student. So, students should have a positive reaction towards everything as this not only helps in solving problems at a rapid pace but also ensures an atmosphere that is less chaotic. Therefore, students must learn how to turn a conversation from a win-lose” situation to a win-win” situation in order to effectively resolve conflicts.

5. Apologise, whenever required
It is human to err, therefore, one must accept whenever we make mistakes and commit blunders. Apologising is a courageous act and helps in swiftly correct ones own mistakes. This helps the student to grow individually, both in personal and school/professional lives. At present times, apologising is the most important social skill as it elevates acceptance among peers.

The author is Deepika Sharma, principal, SRS International School, Faridabad.

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