“Educating the mind without educating the heart is no education at all.” - Aristotle!
Academic education indeed helps to impart knowledge, prepare children for their careers and make them employable but that will not prepare them adequately for life’s challenges and make them responsible citizens. As parents, we therefore have to look beyond conventional learning to make social skills a part of pedagogy at an early age because during formative years, they are both vulnerable and receptive. Therefore an effective value based preschool education can actually mould the innocent minds into a strong personality well prepared to face the competitive world even while maintaining the social decorum necessary to be a good human being.
What are Social skills?
The simple golden rule of Social skill is “Doing unto others as you would have them do unto you”. The Mosaic Law contains a parallel commandment: “Whatever hurts you, do not do to any other person.” Some of the aspects that are crucial for a holistic social development are enumerated below -
- Values and principles that mould children into good human beings -
Love and Compassion, Unity and Collaboration, Discipline and Humility, Simple Living and Sacrifice, Honesty and integrity, Freedom without abuse – these are only some of those essential human values. They not only help children to make them good citizens but also prepare them to lead a happy life. Children need to be made aware of the importance of these values and nurtured in such a manner that they follow that for life and not compromise on these values, no matter how hard circumstances get.
- Spirit of inclusiveness
This is an era where Technology, AI and Automation dominate the world and the millennial today are deprived of opportunities to interact with human beings to the extent the older generations were naturally exposed to. Children need to be made aware in a conscious way that individuals are only an integral part of society. When this awareness is well fostered in them, they naturally develop a spirit of inclusiveness in society and become successful in managing relationships. Some of the important skills that are relevant here are
- Team spirit and cooperation
- Good communication skills such as reading and writing
- Good listening skills
- Greet people politely
- Spirit of sharing
- Expression of gratitude when help offered whether or not accepted
- Humility and courage to accept mistakes and apologize
- Learning to react gracefully to negative comment if they are not justified
- Self awareness and Empathy towards individuals as also to society at large –
On this Planet earth, since we are an integral part of Society at large, every action and reaction at our end would impact someone, somewhere, sometime. So we need to create self awareness among them about
- What we are allowed to do and what is not appropriate in social perception
- How our actions impact someone’s life positively or negatively
- How to align our thinking, our emotions and behavior in a positive way
- What are our responsibilities towards Nature, Environment and Mother Earth?
- How can we protect and preserve scarce natural resources
- Emotional quotient
Emotional skills refers to a child’s ability to deal with, manage, express and control his or her emotional state, including anger, sadness, excitement, anxiety and joy. Emotional stability is an important aspect of resiliency. These are the skills that shape their mental strength and help them to react in a balanced and rational way even in negative and challenging situations.
Here are some ways to build a strong and resilient emotional quotient.
- Guide them not to suppress emotions but express them in a morally acceptable way
- Help them overcome negative emotions such as Jealousy, hatred and violence which are all an integral part of emotional quotient
- Get them volunteer in NGO activity or even spend some time in less privileged environment. This way, they would learn to empathize and count their blessings
- Extracurricular activities involving tryst with Nature so they learn to enjoy small pleasures and fosters holistic perspective to life
- Encourage Indoor and outdoor sports activities that stimulate a healthy competitive spirit and a sportive approach towards failures
At Skola, we have premier products designed to cater to a holistic social development in every child. Experiential ways of learning are based on extensive research whereby they are incited not just to learn but to become students for life.
What skills can children learn from these toys?
- Cognitive skills
- Explorative thinking - both convergent and divergent
- Creative thinking, Problem solving and decision making
- Working in teams
- Communication skills