4 Ways to help your little extrovert thrive at home

by | Apr 1, 2020 | Parenting, preschool, toddler

Social distancing is easier for some of us than others.

Especially our children. For those on the more introverted side, they’re delighted to stay home and hang with the family. They are content! For your children who are extroverted, it’s a little like torture not being able to play with your friends when you feel perfectly fine, the weather is beautiful and you need some fun. Young children are concrete thinkers, meaning they really have to be able to touch and feel something to understand it. Abstract ideas like germs, viruses and contagiousness make no sense whatsoever. Keep reading for a great activity that helps them understand germs and how they spread.

Here’s a few ways to help your extroverted child through these next weeks: 

Make a playdate with a friend through Zoom or FaceTime.

Plan with another parent to have your children play together, deciding in advance what toy/activity you’ll each have available so they are playing with the same thing, for example legos or duplos, character toys, art projects where they can show each other what they’re making, dress up clothes – you be the doctor, I’ll be the patient, etc. Set up a phone or computer where the kids can see each other well so they can talk and share what they’re doing. You may need to give a little guidance on how to engage this way.  Set a time limit that works for each of you and the attention span of your children — and end it before the play/interaction disintegrates, probably no longer than 15 minutes.

Facetime with grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins.

Almost every morning I facetime with my grandkids who live 1200 miles away. Their favorite thing is when I show them what’s going on at our house. Sometimes I’ll let them watch as I play fetch with the dog or we’ll eat breakfast together. Lately they’ve been asking me to show them their toys that we keep here, especially the scooters in the garage. They just like to look at them. I also get to see their rooms, what’s new in the backyard and listen to their stories.

These connections are especially important now and regular face-time calls with your family will not only help your child but will be good for you as well. We all need each other right now.

Make a video to send to your friend 

Ask your child to tell a joke or do something they think is really funny. Send the video to their friend’s mom and ask them to send a video back for your child to watch. This back and forth of making each other laugh may help them feel actively connected. Here’s a list of kid-humor jokes to get the silliness started.

Make a special delivery

Make cookies for your child’s friends, bag them up and deliver to the front door. Ring the doorbell and run to your car, wait for them to come out and wave hello from the car.

This one is two-fold. You get to bake with your child which is always fun and then you have the joy that comes from giving someone a surprise gift.

You can take this idea a step further and deliver goodies to your neighbors, the fire station or other people in your world that would love a little treat. When we do kind things for other people, like give them the cookies that you REALLY would rather keep for yourself, we take a big step towards being less egocentric and more altruistic. It’s a journey that takes a while and these kinds of activities help your child move along.

To help your child begin to understand WHY he can’t play with his friends, here’s an activity you can do with preschool age children that demonstrates what germs are like.  All you need is some glitter.

Sprinkle a little glitter on their hands and then have them wash with soap and water. More than likely, there will be glitter stuck in the nooks and crannies when they’re done.

You can also purchase Glo Germ, created to teach about germs and handwashing. You rub the lotion on your hands then wash them. Then look at your hands under a UV black light and you can see how effectively you’ve washed. This is a great illustration for children on how long you scrub the soap on your hands when you wash.



You’ll get through these next weeks of social distancing. Your child, even that little extrovert that needs other people, will figure out what to do. Boredom is good, it’s the birthplace of every great idea and forces us to be creative.

Hang in there! We’re pulling for you. laughingsealed

Meet Ann

I'm a child development specialist, parent coach and teacher trainer. I've cared for countless babies in child development programs, plus 3 kids, 3 grand babies and 5 foster babies! I LOVE babies and would come hold yours if I could. ❤️

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