Parenting Connection: Social reintroduction through scaffold parenting

Parenting Connection

LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) – It’s Parenting Connection Tuesday and 6 News is here for you with tips, strategies, and helpful reminders from local child development experts on how we can be better parents and guardians.

Today’s topic: Social reintroduction through scaffold parenting

More than 50% of Michigan will be vaccinated with at least one dose by the end of the week – and we’re already starting to see “normalization” return. That being said, child development experts say parents shouldn’t underestimate how de-stabilizing re-entry will be for not kids.

Most of us who have been dealing with anxiety due to the virus will now have to adjust to the new challenge… that being letting our children be a part of the world again. Experts say, anxious children who flourished at home during lockdown may struggle with re-engaging in person — so they recommend a scaffolding approach to solving this.

There are three pillars of scaffold parenting that include support, structure and encouragement.
Supporters of this approach say at every stage, parents can model and teach positive, prosocial behaviors, give corrective feedback and boost self-esteem.

To scaffold an anxious child for social reentry in the coming months, experts say:

*Support them with empathy, validation and intervention. Assure them that you understand their fears and concerns.

*Structure routines and schedules to give a child a sense of security.

*Encourage kids to get back into the social scene. Urge them to set up FaceTime interactions with friends that can become in-person playdate and practice socializing with them.

Child development experts say it’s likely many kids will go through some trial and error moments as they resume real-life interactions with their peers, but it’ll get easier the more they re-enter the world.

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