Many who have toddlers at home will understand how irksome it becomes to teach them the warmth of sharing. There is no doubt, that the children below 5 years of age cannot easily accept giving away their toys, food, chocolates, candies to other kids. They scream ‘It’s mine’ whenever somebody tries to get hold of their things. They may get annoyed, frustrated and grab the things away or hit them to show that they are not welcome to touch. We being parents, teachers, guardians, need to show the children how to share, need to give an extra support while they are trying to learn.
The best way of teaching a kid is when we our self inculcate the habit of sharing in front of our kid. When a toddler sees his Mom, Dad sharing things with their friends, family, relatives it gets influenced too. You can always say to make the toddler understand, ‘ Jin, Dad wanted to use my cell phone, so I gave it to him. The other day I wanted to drive your Dad’s car, so he shared it with me. It’s so good to share our things with our beloved, isn’t it?’
Teach taking turns
If there are multiple kids at home and there is a toy, which everybody wants to play with, it is best to make the kids take turns. The younger one amongst the five can have the first turn and once the time gets over the next one will get a chance to play. This way the toddler will understand that his time to play is over and he will get a chance to play again once his turn comes. If followed for a long duration, kids indubitably start sharing toys by dividing time!
Make sharing rules
We can always make few rules and make them understand not to break these rules of sharing. Rules can be like:
- Never say ‘No’ if somebody asks for your toy. Share it when it is asked for.
- If you need something, request for it from the other person having it.
- Wait for your turn when you are sharing toys with others.
If the toddler understands that these rules can’t be broken otherwise the other kid will get more chocolates (reward), he will make sure not to transgress them! When you see that the neighbor kid has less friends you can take an advantage and say to the child,’ Jin, nobody wants to be friends with Mike as he doesn’t share his toys. But, everybody likes to come here and play with you because you share.’
Be lenient with Favorite toys
Sometimes, few toddlers refuse to share their favorite toy with anybody no matter how vehemently you ask them to. It is okay if they are very possessive about few toys but make them understand that if his friend comes to play home then that toy will not come out. He can play with it only when he is alone. Show him the place where he can put that toy when he is not playing.
Understand the Child’s nature
Also, it’s important to make sure to know whether a toddler is a grabber or a giver. If he is always a grabber, make sure that he understands how it feels like when somebody else snatches his favorite thing away from him. You can say, ‘ Jin, when Mary took away your sharpener without asking you, you cried. That’s how your friends feel when you grab away their things. ‘ On the other hand if a toddler is always a giver its equally important to teach him how to say ‘No’. ‘ John, you gave away all your pencils to your friends. How will you write now? There is no money to buy a new one. Next time, when somebody asks you for something see to it that you have some for yourself and then share.’
Don’t forget to praise
Patting on the back when the child makes good attempt on sharing is equally important. Many a times we don’t remember to applause in the process of making them learn. If a toddler is seen sharing his cookie with her sister go praise him and give an extra cookie to show how good it is to share.
While we teach them sharing, let us learn too!