Choo Choo Train

Help Toddlers Learn to Share

Are you a parent of siblings who wants to teach your kids to share their toys? Or are you a parent of an only child who wants to teach your kid the good manner of sharing? No matter which category you’re in, you’ll find easy ways to help your kids to share below. But first, we’d like to say thank you and well done for your good intention!

Bring your kid out for social situations. Take your kid to a playground for instance. Encourage your kid to take turns on the swing set. By the way, in situations like this the term “take turns” is easier for children to accept because they know they will get the object instead of the term “share” which implies they have to give up the object.

Share anything with your kid. You are your kid’s role model so if you share your favourite spot on the couch with her, or share a special treat with him, your kids will understand what sharing is and it will be easier for them to do it with other people. This is the situation you can use the term “share” to let them know it’s actually a nice thing.

Let kids try to share. When you notice a tussle over toys, wait. See and listen if they can come up with a solution. You might have your proud moment when you find out your kids are able to negotiate. If they don’t, simply guide them to make the negotiation by encouraging taking turns and setting time limits.

Build something together with your kid. After letting your kid arrange her wooden blocks alone, ask to join. Take turns to stack and arrange the tower. This strategy never fails for us at Choo Choo Train. Children automatically want to build a big and tall tower together with the teacher like it’s their dream project.

Make music with your kid. Have musical instruments at home? Play a tune on the xylophone and encourage your kid to take her turn with the tambourine. Alternatively, count the beat together to use your instruments at the same time.

Task your kid to serve food. At breakfast, ask your kid to put two slices of pancake on each family member’s plate. It may seem like a math activity but it also reinforces the idea of sharing. Praise your kid, “you share two pancakes with everybody, that is so generous.”

Finally, be patient. Sharing is a learned activity, and mastering it takes some time. Your toddler might only start sharing at age 4. Nonetheless, you can start now and keep doing the steps above to introduce them to the merits of sharing. A highly recommended child-care centre also offers daily opportunities for toddlers to learn about sharing and other prosocial behaviours.