As adults, we know how important it is to be able to work successfully with others. Teamwork is an important skill for young children to learn, as it provides benefits for later life.
Here are some ways you can help to promote teamwork in your child.
Model cooperative behavior at home
Young children take their behavioral cues from their parents, so the home is an ideal place to demonstrate teamwork. Asking your child to help with simple household tasks such as cleaning up their toys or putting dirty clothes in the laundry basket will help them to see how their actions contribute to the family. Ensure that your child also sees you working in cooperation with other members of the family.
Encourage collaborative games
Children learn during play, so try to get your child involved in games where teamwork is key to success. Some examples of collaborative games that are also fun include: Building a block tower, putting together a puzzle, Duck Duck Goose, a relay race, and bouncing a ball on a parachute. Emphasize to your child that the focus is not competition, but working together.
Look for everyday opportunities for teamwork
Aside from collaborative games, there are plenty of cooperation opportunities in daily life. Activities that may seem minor can have a great impact on a child learning about their world. For example, if your children love pizza, you can have a build-your-own-pizza night at home and have the siblings add their favorite toppings together.
Praise cooperative behavior
When your child is cooperating well with another person, praising them will help them to understand that teamwork is good behavior. For example, you might thank your child for playing nicely with a friend, or express admiration of a drawing your children created together.
Ask your preschool for teamwork advice
Whether you want teamwork ideas specific to your child, or have questions about how to best teach problem-solving, your child’s preschool or daycare is an ideal resource. Not only do they have experience with children of all temperaments and personalities, but they also know your child quite well. Your child’s preschool teacher will also be able to offer advice based on the latest strategies and best practices in early childhood education.
Being able to work with others toward a common goal is a valuable social skill for children to practice. Encouraging teamwork in your toddler or preschooler can be fun as well as educational with our easy tips.