Sharing is a vital skill that is important for toddlers to learn. But teaching sharing to preschoolers can be a challenge. Little ones are not always willing to share their favorite toy or snack. But there are ways to make it easier for them to learn about why sharing is so important.
We’re going to review 7 tips that can help make teaching sharing to preschoolers easier at home. Whether it’s with siblings, friends, or family, toddlers can learn to be better sharers and maybe even help their friends be better at it too.
How to Teach Sharing to Preschoolers
At times it can be difficult to manage your emotions – regardless of your age. But as a preschooler whose emotional development is developing at every moment, it can be especially difficult to understand feelings. That’s why it’s so important to teach children how to manage their emotions and the importance of sharing. Here are a few ways you can teach your children about sharing.
Don’t Force Sharing
While you may think that forcing your child to share will get them to do it, it can actually delay the development of these skills. Rather than forcing it upon them, introduce the idea of taking turns. You can keep the turns short at first so that they don’t think they’re giving up their toy forever. As they warm up to the idea, you can extend the time they’re away from their shared toy.
Set Limits for Teaching Sharing to Preschoolers
When you’re teaching sharing to preschoolers, you may want to set a timer when the sharing begins. A child may think they have to give up their toy for a long time. But, if it’s only for a few minutes, they’ll be more likely to share again.
Be a Sharing Example
Children learn by imitating people. If they see you sharing, they may be more likely to give it a try. Share a snack with your spouse or with an older child. Encourage older siblings to do the same. This way, your preschooler will see that everyone shares and it’s the right thing to do.
Point Out Examples of Sharing
If you’re watching TV or reading a book, point out positive examples of sharing. The more exposure your toddler has to share, the more they’ll see how it’s done and that it’s a positive thing.
Praise Them When They Do Share
When your toddler does share, praise them for it. Give them specific encouragement for a job well done. Praise can go a long way when teaching sharing to preschoolers. It reinforces positive behavior and can make your toddler more likely to repeat their actions to receive that praise again.
Show Them Sharing is Fun
We all know kids love to have fun. So, why not make sharing a fun activity? Do activities and play games that are great for two or more people. Doing a puzzle and working on it together while sharing pieces, is one example of showing your preschooler that sharing is fun. Once they see the finished product and that sharing helped to get them there, they should feel proud and happy.
Provide Opportunities to Share When Teaching Sharing to Preschoolers
Give your child opportunities to share. This can be at a playdate or with other family members. Talk to your child about the items he would want to share with others and let him know that it’s okay if there’s a special toy he may not be willing to share yet. This may make him more likely to start the sharing process.
Remember, children learn how to share at different points in their lives. If you feel as though your child is not picking it up fast enough, give him time. Be patient. Your child will eventually learn the ropes and learn that sharing is caring!
Helping Preschoolers Share at Primary Beginnings
At Primary Beginnings, we know how important teaching sharing to preschoolers is. That’s why we work those ideas into our programs. At Primary Beginnings, you’ll find that our caring staff is patient with our children as they grow and develop.