How Do Extroverted Children Behave?

Extroverted Children Are Very Common in America

Children running in a yard
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Most people believe that an extrovert is a person who is friendly and outgoing. While that may be true, that is not the true meaning of extroversion. An extrovert is a person who is energized by being around other people. This is the opposite of an introvert who is energized by being alone.

What Are the Qualities of an Extrovert?

Extroverts tend to "fade" when alone and can easily become bored without other people around.

When given the chance, an extrovert will talk with someone else rather than sit alone and think. In fact, extroverts tend to think as they speak, unlike introverts who are far more likely to think before they speak. Extroverts often think best when they are talking. Concepts just don't seem real to them unless they can talk about them; reflecting on them isn't enough.

Extroverts enjoy social situations and even seek them out since they enjoy being around people. In fact, it may be the case that an extrovert is only able to do his or her best work as part of a team. 

Implications of Extroversion

Studies suggest that up to 75% of the general American population consists of extroverts. Because the majority of people are extroverts, behavior tends to be judged against the ways an extrovert would behave. For example, an introvert, who often prefers solitude to a crowd, is seen as shy or judged to have some kind of social disorder.

Introverts who don't want to participate in group work are seen as not being team players.

Because extroverts are energized by interaction with other people, extroverted children may need some time to wind down after having spent time socializing with other children. For example, if an extroverted child attends a party, he can come home still quite excited.

She may want to talk about what happened at the party, if not with her parents, then with her friends. If the party is in the evening, the extroverted child may have a hard time getting to sleep because she is still full of energy.

An extroverted child may be quiet and get bored easily when he has to spend too much time alone. Once he is around others, however, he may immediately perk up. This suggests that extroverted children, especially those who are gifted, may be best served in situations that involve group work, collaboration, and social interaction. In some cases, private schools may be a better choice than public schools where children are usually encouraged to "do their own work."

Can an Extrovert Be Shy?

What many people don't realize is that an extrovert can also be shy. Shyness is another name for social anxiety. This can be difficult because the extrovert really does crave company, but the shyness can make it difficult to succeed in interactions with people they don't know. Shy, extroverted children are those who are probably most in need of help overcoming their shyness.

Some shy extroverts do very well in organized group situations in which they can be socially engaged without needing to come up with topics of conversation or reasons to connect. Examples of this  type of activity include team sports, community theater or drama club.

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