To share is to spread joy. Sharing is also a critical skill that comes in handy when kids play and learn. It sows the seeds of empathy and helps in building the social skills required for a well-adjusted adult. The habit of sharing is developed over several years. Hence it is never too early to start introducing the concept of sharing is caring.
Children under the age of four might not understand how sharing works but are sure to follow the examples you set them. Show them how you take turns as an adult in situations like waiting in line at the supermarket or stopping at the red light. Get them familiar with turn-taking initially by sharing a toy with them frequently using the phrases “my turn” and “your turn”. Use a timer to ensure fairness.
Sharing could prove challenging to toddlers who grab their toys and exclaim “Mine!”. In that case, do not force them to share. Instead, nurture an environment that fosters sharing. Respect your child’s right to the possessions they consider precious. Sharing is a fine balance of respecting ownership and being considerate of others.
Like other skills, sharing requires practice and support to master. To create opportunities for your child to share using the following ways:
1.Play simple turn-based games like Hiding and Seek or Snakes and Ladders to demonstrate turn taking
2. Give your little one some flowers and ask them to share it with everyone in the room. People’s smiles and thank-yous will teach them that sharing spreads joy.
3. Complete a puzzle while taking turns adding the pieces.
4.Before playtime with friends, help your child choose toys they’d like to share.
5.Choose activities like building blocks or arts and crafts that involve sharing of resources.
Furthermore, ask them to share a sapling from the garden to emphasize that sharing could be caring not just for someone else but for the environment too. The holiday season is a great time to show children the joy of sharing with others less fortunate. Pick out clothes and toys that they want to donate along with your child. This will impress on them that it’s not how much we give but how much love we put into giving. Children are just learning that it can be fun to share with others. The values of patience and tolerance go hand in hand with sharing. So keep these in mind while you get your child sharing away.