The Important Skill of Self-Advocacy

From The Mentoring Partnership:

This is a skill that we can inspire in youth as early as kindergarten. It starts with asking a child to role-play their feelings by asking open-ended questions. Once you teach young people how to feel comfortable advocating for themselves, it becomes a gift that will help them learn independence.

5 Tips for Building Self-Advocacy Skills with Young Children

  • Have kids order for themselves at restaurants.
  • Have kids make eye contact when talking to adults they know outside the family.
  • If a problem arises that can be solved via email, have a young child dictate an email to you. Type it in their words.
  • Help the child think through a problem by asking open-ended questions such as: What do you want to happen? What do you think you’ll do first? What do you think he’ll say?
  • Role play the negotiation with your child before they make their official attempt.

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