DD is 5.5 and can be pretty shy. Not at home and not with people she knows, but with most everyone else. If a stranger, acquaintance, or neighbor talks to her she will completely ignore them or walk away. I know that she's not trying to be rude and when she was younger she could get away with it, but now that she's 5 I think people are starting to think she's rude or weird. We've talked to her about respecting elders and that her peers are not going to continue to try to be friends with her if she keeps shunning them. Is there anything else we can do?
I also went out of my way to set up playdates and to attend birthday parties, school events, etc. I never forced her to join in, but, tried to give her many social learning opportunities.
She has outgrown a lot of it, and, i'm pleased to say, she seems to gain more self confidence as she ages.
"Share your smiles". That's what I say as a reminder. And I usually try to remind her beforehand if I know we'll be somewhere stressful. We wave hello too at times. Look into information on "introverted" people. You might find it insightful.
Teach her some non-verbal ways to respond. Tell her to 'share your smiles' and to wave. My introverted, slow-to-warm-up child did well with those instructions. He's 10 and will now respond with a word or two.
"A little" is key here. He's still Mr. Monosyllable, but he's pleasant enough that people don't mind.