Monday, 19 March 2012

Encouraging your child to share


                              It's a skill every child has to learn eventually............but how??

As a parent, there comes a time when your toddler has to begin to understand the process of sharing. Some parents find it harder than others, often having a battle with their child themselves! It can be a long and difficult process, but it is worthwhile in the long run.

My daughter is only now getting to the stage where sharing is becoming an issue. She loves playing with other children and so far, there haven't been too many incidents where sharing for her has been an issue, up until today when she had been playing with something and left it unattended for a few minutes and it got swiped by her friend! The three second rule isn't something you can teach a toddler!!!

When sharing is an issue with younger children, a way to get around any tantrums is to distract them with something else. This may not work when a child is transfixed on a toy, but definitely worth a try! Older children can be encouraged to decide amongst themselves how best to share a toy, and this is where sand timers can come in very handy! By setting a timer, an older child can grasp the fact that once the sand has run out, they can play with the toy! This works especially well in Child care settings.

One excellent way to encourage sharing is to role model it yourself. Children do learn best by observing what they see around them and copying adults. We have already begun playing games with our daughter where we say "Daddy's turn" etc to allow her to grasp the idea of turn taking and therefore sharing. We have already had some results from this when she sees one of us with something and she will say "Mummy's" for example. |Starting early can therefore be quite beneficial!!

It will be a long process and each child learns to share at a different pace, as with all development but as with many new skills, you need to be patient and remain calm. They will get it one day!!!

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