We were taught from an early age that ‘sharing is caring.’ We know that we are supposed to share what we have with other people, and every person would like to share easily.
However, the reality is that sharing is hard, even for adults. Therefore, you can imagine how harder it must be for children who do not understand why they have to give their toys to other children to play with or why they need to share their delicious snacks and cookies. We see this all the time at our Kenosha daycare.
However, hope is not lost. These are some tips you can apply.
Start as Soon as Possible
It is never too soon to teach your child adaptive skills or about sharing. Start as soon as you can. Start now because there is nothing to wait for. Provided your child is old enough to grasp something, use it as a learning moment. Let him or her hold the object then ask him to pass it to you then give it back to him and ask him for it again, and the cycle continues. Your child will understand that it’s important to take turns to have something.
Act as an Example
What you do will stick in a child’s mind better than what you tell them. Therefore, you need to share if you want a toddler to know how to share too.
An example of how you can go about this is by telling your child to share your couch with you, and then you can have fun cuddling.
You can buy an ice-cream and then give them some.
Better still, you can share with other people who are not your family members. Your child will also spire to do what you do. While doing these things, it is vital to slip in the word ‘sharing’ so he can know what you are doing.
Don’t Punish a Toddler for not Sharing
It may be frustrating when you see that your child doesn’t want to share with others. However, this doesn’t mean that he’ll grow up to be a selfish human being. It just means that he’s a child at that moment.
It can sometimes take multiple years to truly understand what sharing is so let them act their age. This does not mean that you should encourage them. The best thing is to tell them you are disappointed with their decision of not sharing and that it makes you sad to know that they don’t want to share.
Don’t make a fuss out of it. Part of being a parent is learning to ignore some struggles. No child wants to make his parents feel sad and disappointed. Therefore, your child will find a way of correcting their behavior. The next time you might be surprised to see them sharing without you asking him to.
Praise Your Child After Sharing
When your child shares something with someone else, make it a learning moment. Praise him or her for it and not just general praises like telling him that he is a good boy but the kind of praise that shows him what he did great.
For example, you can ask them if they noticed the big smile their friend had when they gave them a particular toy. You can then tell your child that sharing his toy with his friend, made his friend happy.