Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Top Five Things You Probably Won’t Hear at a Playgroup for Toddlers

Here are the top five things you probably won't hear at your next playgroup with toddlers!

1. “Here, please play with my toys!”
2. “Sharing is fun, mommy!”
3. “That’s your toy, not mine! Here you go!”
4. “Anyone want some of my snack?”
5. “It’s your turn! You go first.”

Sharing. It is such a tough concept to teach preschoolers. Many days, you may feel like you are in a sharing war zone with your child, battling your toddler about sharing his or her toys and taking turns with others. Don’t worry, mom and dad. This is a right of passage for every toddler and eventually your child will grow out of not wanting to share. What can you do in the meantime to survive this stage? Here are a few ways to help your child learn about the art of sharing.

- Find ways to share with your child and explain that you are sharing with them because you love them. Teach your child through “teachable moments” that sharing is a way to show people you care about them.
- Check out books at your local library about sharing and make reading these books part of your daily routine. Reading about the concept of sharing and seeing examples in books of how other children share will help your child better understand this difficult subject.
- When you see your child sharing, praise them with kind words. Use their moment of sharing as an opportunity to point out to your child how nice it is to share and how proud you are of him or her.
- Try to let your child work out “sharing issues” with other children as much as possible. It is part of social play. However, when it gets physical or if a child gets upset, it’s time to intervene. Demonstrate to the children how you can share and take turns and how it’s fun to share with friends.

In the meantime, try not to get too upset or embarrassed by your toddler’s behavior. Struggles over toys and personal belongings are common among this age set and it will get better with time. Just continue to positively reinforce good behavior and point out ways your child can share when playing in a group setting.

Happy sharing from Pure and Honest Kids!

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