Sharing is something that every parent (of two or more) will look forward to. I am a mother of two little girls and I can say that when both the kids share and play it is bliss for me! They both play with each other and that gives me some extra time me. Read along, Sharing, How kids learn to share.
Let us go age-wise:
Sharing with kids at Age- 1-2:
The kid would be learning to be a little independent. As parents, we should let them take the initiative and encourage them while they try something on their own.
Introduce the concept of sharing to kids at this age. But don’t force them! Forcing makes them cranky. If you are going to a play date, have few extra toys packed in the diaper bag and once the kid starts playing with other kids, they would eventually give one toy and take the other.
Sharing with kids at Age: 2-2 ½
Shows interest in sharing (willingly) Even if you don’t talk about sharing.
Around this age, kids would understand the meaning of giving and take and they would observe how the other kid is feeling. If the other kid is crying, they would give their toy to them. When you see this coming, don’t miss an opportunity to talk to your kid about how the other is feeling about that particular toy. “I think she likes your doll; she wants to play with it for once. Why not share for 5 minutes and you again play for 5 minutes” The more we try to explain the more they would understand, others’ feelings.
Sharing with kids at Age: 3
Would take charge, and would indulge in cooperative play with cousins, siblings, or friends.
From around this age, we can expect the child to be positive about sharing (expect sometimes, where kids are cranky and don’t want to share. Come on, there are kids after all) They would understand the importance of sharing and would make the younger sibling explain when they don’t share.
The situation with my kids:
I usually give both the kids options of what they don’t want to share (kids have one or two special toys that they are not ready to share) I keep them away when it is playtime (or a play date with friends or cousins).
I usually tell the phrase, ‘It is your special toy and you don’t share it with anyone. If you take it down, you have to share! There is no other option) This way they would avoid taking that special toy down and this would not hurt either of them.
Keep in mind that children should be positive about the whole sharing with others concept. Then only they can enjoy playing taking turns. If there is a conflict going on about a particular toy, let them resolve it! Adults’ involvement is not needed in such cases. Although, one needs to be supervising them (there are kids, anyway)
If you wish to read my other a2z blog posts:
P: Parenting tip: Ways to handle Temper Tantrums in Toddlers
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