I have a 4 year old, a 3 year old and a 19 month old, this makes for some interesting sharing adventures as one will want to play with the same toy as the other very often.
It is rather difficult at the moment for me to teach the younger two to share as I am not sure they even understand the concept. My 4 year old on the other hand has a little knowledge on this subject with two younger siblings who are always after his stuff.
I asked a few Mom friends and fellow bloggers if they had any advice for teaching sharing and this is what they came up with!
Wise words from fellow Moms on kids sharing
Maggy from Red Ted Art says: There are a few things I TRY and do… for example, we bake a batch of cookies and they always take some round to neighbours and share some. If one child has a party and the other doesn’t, I get the child with the party bag to share (just one) of the sweets with the other child. I don’t force them to share everything all the time , but to think about when they have “lots” and others nothing, to give a little away…… When it comes to “playdates and toys”, they are always allowed to have “one favourite item of the day, that they don’t have to share”, but all other days they have to take turns on/ give the guest priority!
Helen from Peakle Pie says: A friend always used to get her 2 kids to share like this – one would divide it and the other would choose first. Perfect everytime!
Krissy from B-Inspired Mama says: I think it’s important to remember where kids are developmentally. Most toddlers really aren’t capable of thinking much beyond themselves to understand sharing. So while it’s okay to practice sharing with them, it’s also good to just distract them and teach older siblings how to compromise with them when it comes to toys.
D from Still Playing School says: E (just turned four) is allowed to put away a few special items when friends visit or when baby brother is awake. Anything out must be shared!
Allison from No Time For Flash Cards says: When I taught ( 2-3 year olds) I would have my students bring in something that was special to them and at circle time we’d pass them around and let other students handle them. It is a simple activity but for my youngest students (2) such a simple thing was important especially the children that were new to group settings/ oldest/only kids. We’d do the activity a few times in the first few weeks.
More fabulous advice on teaching kids to share
- Kristina from Toddler Approved talks about her Favorite Tips to Teach Kids To Share and mentions a few favorite parenting resources about sharing that are helping her family create a more peaceful home.
- Katie from The Audacity of Motherhood says: “Not sharing can be good. We try to have two of everything…” She also has a powerful read on Sharing Sucks: or How Not to Teach Kids to Share.
- Taming the Goblin shares her thoughts on sharing in the early years, Can Kids Share?
- Jodi from Meaningful Mama has wonderful tips and thoughts on Teaching Kids to Share. I especially resonate to her statement of: “I know when your child doesn’t share, it feels embarrassing”.
- Amanda from Not Just Cute has Nine Words to End Fights Over Toys!
- Katie from It’s a Mother Thing tells of her observations on sharing between her two boys in Share and Share Alike.
Read about sharing with your kids in these story books
- It’s Mine! by Leo Lionni
- Mine! Mine! Mine! by Shelly Becker
- Share and Take Turns by Cheri J. Meiners
- Sharing: How Kindness Grows by Fran Shaw.
Sharing Activities for Preschoolers
- Try some Cooperative Games for Preschoolers – Organized activities can be fun and contribute to children’s learning. The goal of these games is to find ways to share.
- Take a look at these Activities that Encourage Sharing and Co-operating.
Do you have any ideas to teach sharing to toddlers and preschoolers?
We would love to hear from you! Leave us a comment. 😀