Sharing Strategies about Sharing
Learn The Hula Hoop Conga! How a plastic ring can help children learn to share.
What You Need To Know
Sharing pens, scissors, building blocks, and glue is not always easy for first graders. Learning this cooperative skill develops social abilities and an awareness of group responsibility. It helps if the groups are small ones – smaller numbers are not only better for limited resources and closer teacher/parent interaction, but many children feel more secure in environments with fewer peers. Children who feel secure will be more likely to share with others.
How You Can Help
- Be warm. Parents or teachers who are warm, spontaneous, and responsive encourage more sharing behavior from children. The reverse is also true. Parents or teachers who are uninterested or distant can make children aggressive or withdrawn.
- Role-play. By pretending to be a fireman, or a hairdresser, or a policewoman, children learn to consider others’ points of view. Role-play using puppets can also be effective in coaching social skills. “When the raccoon took away all your pencils, how did you feel, Mr. Croc?”
- Play cooperative games, rather than competitive ones. Try Circle of Cans, with students passing a can using only their feet. Or Hula Hoop Conga, where a line of children holding hands must each pass through a hula hoop without letting go of each other.
- Coach. Some children may require more direct instruction, particularly if they have frequent conflicts over toys. Use puppets to display appropriate behavior, discuss sharing behavior, and define the actions which are problems. “Hitting won’t help, Marc. We take turns with the toys in this class.”
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