We’ve all been there, you’re on a play date and its going perfectly- that is until your child lets out a huge shriek. Are they hurt? No.
Your child does not want to share their toy and decides the easiest way to get it back is to jump on top of their friend out of sheer panic.
You want the ground to swallow you up and begin to question yourself- What will people think? Why won’t my child share?
I am here to reassure you that this behaviour is completely normal, and to share with you some of the best tips to support you and your child with their sharing skills.
Sharing is a vital life skill that is best taught early on. Sharing teaches children about compromise and fairness. When children learn this skill they also learn how to take turns and negotiate as well as how to cope with disappointment. With this skill securely in place children have a better chance at making and retaining friendships throughout their life.
Top Tips for Success
A parent is a child’s very first educator, you are able to establish basic techniques to support your child in developing their sharing skills as they grow. It may be a good idea to explain these strategies to any other caregiver who spends a significant amount of time with your child.
This will ensure consistency and prevent mixed signals that may confuse your child. Here are some helpful strategies:
- Be a positive role model- showcase your own sharing skills when you are around your child.
- Positive praise- When you see it, praise it, this will raise your child’s self-esteem and encourage them to do it again next time.
- Use a timer- for children who struggle with sharing, a short timer can be a great resource, this allows children to anticipate their turn whilst being an excellent distraction!
- Play games which involve turn taking, your child won’t realise it is sharing if it is part of a game, ensure the game is short and concise (such as rolling a ball to each other) and keep it frequent.
- Talk to your child and explain that it is fine to have some ‘special toys’ which they may not want to share. If this is the case, you and your child can find a safe place to put them during the play date.
If you need any additional support, please feel free to contact us at The Little Dreamers Nursery, We are always happy to help!