Sunday, October 30, 2011

Teaching kids the importance of sharing

     Many families now follow the single child norm. It is of course the prerogative of couples to decide the number of kids they want to have. However, having a single child may need additional conscious effort on developing some social skills in the child that remain undeveloped due to the independence of the child, due to non sharing of things, issues of incompatibility etc that children learn to resolve earlier if there are siblings.
    Single children may not learn to share things that belong to them, as they do not have a brother or sister with whom they could have shared toys, pens or pencils, clothes, eatables etc. Single children may get into the habit of having everything for themselves, and may become possessive about things that belong them. 
    They may develop tendencies like stubbornness, adamant nature, jealousy, not being able to give, being in control of everything in their life, not sharing emotions or even material objects with anyone else.
    Helping children to reduce their individualistic tendency and teaching them to share things can help them to cope and adapt better in adult life as adults are expected to be giving and accommodating people. Letting go of personal things and allowing others to use your stuff helps in making relationships easy and comfortable. If not, it may give an impression that you are selfish, jealous, and materialistic and cannot part with things that belong to you. 
    As parents you can inculcate this habit among children by creating opportunities for them to share. For example, you could invite friends for a party at home and allow the children to use the toys or play items that belong to your kid. Share video games or music cassettes with them. If a friend loves a toy or fancy object you may ask the child if the friend can have it or would the child like to gift it to the friend. 
   You may also invite friends or relatives for overnight stay and let the children occupy your kid’s room so that he/she learns to share the personal space, and personal life with others too.

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