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  • Lauren Lilley

Sharing vs. Taking Turns


I’d love to explain our philosophy that we use and implement at Arbor. First and foremost our teachers will let kids know that if they would like a turn they may ask their classmate for a turn when they have finished playing with a toy or learning material. This promotes use of language skills, every day life experience and patience.

I have a question for you. Let’s all use our imagination with this…. What if you are in the grocery store and someone approached you with your cart completely full and that person said “I want to use your car, let me have your car keys because you need to share… and I also want your full cart of groceries that you spent an hour picking out"? You would look at that person like they were crazy, right? That is your car that YOU drive and own and that shopping cart took your time to choose the perfect items. Why would you have to share? You don’t.

That is your given right, you do not have to share anything. This applies to children when they are playing in the same classroom and seeing another child with a toy they want. What if that toy was Peters toy from home? He is in no way obligated to share his things. But Alison wants that toy. Instead of demanding Peter share the toy, Alison can ask if she may play with the toy when he is finished. This will promote excellent respect and communication skills not to mention fantastic manners.

Let’s say that they toy belongs to the school and the teacher sees that one child is trying to take another child’s learning material. The teacher can intervene and ask Alison to patiently wait until Peter is finished. Without a doubt it will be only a matter of seconds before Peter will give Alison a turn.

Next time you see your child upset because he or she does not want to share use the taking turns method. You will see an enormous attitude change and will avoid any meltdown.


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