Sharing is Caring, we often use this phrase to teach our children the importance of sharing. However, the fact is, nowadays, the culture of sharing is gently but surely fading away. Without sharing as a culture, building relationships will be so very difficult. So how to teach sharing to the children?
A 4-year-old girl, Mahika had a plate of her favorite cookies. While she was enjoying eating it, her schoolmate, Ritu, dropped in to play along with her. What Mahika did next shocked her mother, Renu.
She ran to the kitchen with the plate, gave it to her mother and said, “Maa, keep this aside.” Mom asked “Why?, Are you not hungry?”
“No mamma, Ritu will eat it all, and it’s all mine,” said Mahika.
Mahika’s mom Renu is a wise lady. She understood that Mahika is possessive about her cookies. She also understood, if she insists on Mahika sharing her cookie with her friend Ritu, Mahika will not understand and might rebel or throw tantrums.
What Renu did next was super class.
She told Mahika, “Will you please give me two bourbon biscuits from the jar please? I wish to share with Ritu.”
It was Mahika’s turn to be taken aback. Baffled, she asked her mom, “But those are your favorite biscuit’s isn’t it? Why share it with Ritu?”
Renu smiled and replied, “When I share what I love to have, great friendships are made. Remember, how mumma shares the last paani puri with papa and papa shares the last sip of Thumbs Up with mumma. That shows how much we love each other. Sharing is caring.”
Mahika took back her plate of cookies and ran to the playroom. There she handed one cookie to Ritu. Ritu gave Mahika a big smile. Both of them were beaming. So was Renu.
In this story, Mahika responded brilliantly well to Renu’s gesture of offering her biscuit to Ritu. Often, children do not learn to share in one go. Frequent application of some techniques slowly makes them realize why sharing is beautiful and fun.
In case you are looking for help, here are 6 simple techniques to teach sharing to children!
Whenever your child shares anything with anyone, appreciate it. The words of appreciation encourage children to repeat that act.
Teach sharing to children through right labeling
Make them understand the difference between, “Mine”, “Yours”, and “Ours”. It will help them know the importance of sharing.
Helping to realize their fear
One of the reasons children are scared to share anything is because they doubt if things will come back to them. Help them realize this fear by saying, “Are you afraid you won’t get it back” or “Do you think that he will return it to you broken?”
Once they realize that they are scared, parents can help them get over their fear by actually showing them how to share and how you can get the thing back in the same condition.
Teach children about taking turns
This is more useful when there are siblings. If there is one toy for two children, teach them to take turns in playing with that toy. It is better to start this exercise at an early age. This is because their feeling of identity and belongingness is developing at the toddler age.
Teach them to ask for things rather than grabbing
Sharing is not always about giving things, it is also about taking things from others when needed. Teach your children to ask for the things that they need. Tell them that grabbing someone else’s belonging is not a good manner. The right thing is to ask for it.
Do not yell if the kid is not sharing
True that teaching sharing to children is a tough task. But do not yell at children if they refuse to share something in public. They presume that sharing comes with yelling. It will discourage them.
That’s not all, Techniques needs to be accompanied with activities for the best results…
Here are three activities to teach sharing to children
Share the same canvas or a piece of paper with your little ones. Tell them that we both are going to draw on the same page. It will teach them to share a space, colors or brushes. Also, you both will enjoy this activity as it strengthens the bond.
Get a small gardening kit for your children. Guide them about planting a seed. It would be the best activity to develop a sharing bond between siblings. Assign tasks to them. Like one can dig the soil and other can plant the seed. Both the kids should water the plant on alternate days using the same kit. Training starts then and there.
This is more of a class act, but parents can take it at home too. Give your children a book to read. Show them how to create a dialogue out of it. There are three benefits to this exercise. First, you teach children to share. Second, you encourage their reading habit. Last but not least, you develop a bond between the siblings.
So what can be better than teaching sharing to children at home first? You don’t need to yell, you don’t need to take things away from your children. Teaching sharing to children can be effortless if such interesting activities are conducted frequently at home.