Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Share and Share Alike

(Reposting from April 17, 2013.  My original post is getting too much spam traffic and needs to be removed.)

I saw a segment on a morning show today where they were chatting about a pre-school that has a no-sharing rule.  The children are allowed to play with a toy until they are done with.  Even if it takes all day.  Even if seven other kids have been wanting to play with the toy all day.  You can read more about it here.

When I read it I thought that it was a bit silly.  I understand the thought behind it, that it teaches the other children, the ones who want to play with the toy, a sense of entitlement.  They'll start thinking they can play with whatever toy they want whenever they want.  But if you swing the pendulum too far into "not sharing" then you're rearing children who do not understand about, well, sharing.

The video that I saw showed a daycare facility with multiples of the same toy, just to make sure the kids didn't argue about who got to play with that toy at any given time.  Coddle much?

I like what we've done in our house.  My rule has always been that when someone asks to play with a toy, you can either say "Yes" or you can say "In a few minutes."  It's good for the kids to have the freedom to play as they wish and it's good for kids to understand that they are not the only people in this world.

Simon says: What's mine is mine and what's yours is mine!
What do you think?  Should kids be forced to share?  Should kids never have to share?  Is there a happy medium that you've found for your family?


  1. This is something we've struggled with. It seems like learning to share is a hard lesson. I'm going to try your method. I like it because chances are in a few minutes they're going to be on to something else anyway. :)

    1. Now a year after writing this, I don't even have to think about the sharing discussion anymore. Perhaps my kids are just old enough to be over it (youngest is 8), or perhaps they got tired of hearing me remind them of their choices. Regardless, I'm glad I don't have to play King Solomon about sharing any longer.