||[Nov. 20th, 2012|10:41 pm]
So I am meeting my boyfriend's nephews this weekend, ages 4 and 7, and nieces, ages 10 and 13. I can count the times I've interacted with children around these ages ON ONE HAND. Help me! I want to make a good impression. How do I relate to or interact with these children?|
Just be yourself and be nice. I think children can pick up on fake people or people who dont want to be around them.
Also: You have two ears and one mouth, use them in proportion ;-) Meaning - ask what genuinely interests you and listen to all they want to tell you. Most adults aren't interested in the petty little problems or acquisitions a child makes but for them it's important. That won over most children I ever met.
Wear a baseball cap backward. That's what I do to let kids know I'm cool, too! Oh, and pogs. Do kids still play pogs?
My friends and I were just discussing bringing back pogs the other day! I think I still have some pretty dope slammers.
Like bad_lcuk said, be authentic. When I started nannying and working with kids I would just google an age and words like development and read up about it. It gives surprisingly good insight into how their brains are working at various stages. It might be a bit much for a one time meeting but it really put me at ease when I just was baffled by stuff going on.
It's hard to give specific advice because four year olds and 13 year olds are so different, but I guess I'd just generally say don't be afraid to get down on their level (like playing on the floor with the youngest boy) and stuff like that.
Have fun! Kids aren't that scary, just respect them and relax :)
Pay attention to them. Show them that you are interested. Talk to them not about them, especially if they are old enough to understand. Ask them a couple of questions to show that you are interested in them, not just there for other people.
I came here to say exactly this. My four-year-old son loves any friend of mine that pays attention to him. It's a bonus if you're willing to be silly or have some device to let him play Angry Birds or Fruit Ninja, but mostly it's all about attention.
Say hello and be yourself. Don't talk down to them. A couple questions is nice but don't force a conversation especially with the older children. The little kids might be more interested but usually to tweens and teens adults tend to just blur together and they are more interested in their phones or whatever.
Ask these questions for the four year old:
What's your favorite toy? Can I see your room? What game do you like to play? Do you like to color? Things like that. They will talk to you if you ask questions.
For the seven and ten year old:
Do you like your teacher? What grade are you in? What do you want to be when you grow up? That will get them talking.
For the thirteen year old:
Are you in middle school? Do you like it? Have you met lots of new people this year?
I'd ask them questions about what they're interested in and take it from there.
Just listen and be amused with their stories and interact by using your imagination with them :)