When you welcome a new baby into the world, there are a lot of milestones that we’re told as parents to watch out for. Things like rolling over, standing on their own, and walking are just a few of these – but one milestone we tend not to think too much about is the ability to share. Can you imagine your 6-month-old taking their first steps? No! Just like there will come a time when your child is developmentally ready to share, and it’s normal for it not to happen right away. There are a few ways how to teach your kids to share and help them eventually reach that goal.  But don’t stress, they’ll be sharing with their peers and siblings when they are ready to do so.

Why is it important to learn how to share? Sharing with family and friends can help your little one build stronger bonds within these relationships. There are a lot of things in life that sharing will be a part of, and learning these skills at a young age will help them in the long run.

Here is how to teach your kids to share:
 Talk about the positives of sharing!
  • As a young child, it’s important for them to hear the benefits of learning a new skill. When they finally get to the age where they may start to share, typically around 2-3 years old, they will love to hear what good can come from sharing.
  1. Show mom and dad sharing at home!
  • You are truly their role model at this age, and they tend to want to imitate what they are consistently seeing around them. If they see you setting the example of consistently sharing things like the TV remote, a favorite toy of theirs etc. they might want to practice the same thing.
  1. Use a timer to take turns!
  • Putting a time limit in place may help them understand further the importance of sharing that specific toy or object they may be playing with. This can be helpful with a group of young friends to show them that their time is up and that it’s time to move the toy to the next child.
  1. Show them that sharing isn’t always about toys or physical objects!
  • It’s easy to teach your child to share in the toy room, but what about sharing in everyday life? Teach them ways people share things outside of the house like cars sharing the road, people at the grocery store sharing their time to help us. The possibilities are endless.
  1. Play open-ended games that consistently require sharing!
  • Games such as card games or open-ended board games can help your child communicate when it’s time to share. Having to say things like, “it’s my turn now” or “after that it is your turn” will require them to share while also explaining why it is necessary in the game.
  1. Plan out future playdates!
  • Setting up your child for success is so important, so if you are aware that your child may be having difficulties sharing – make it known to others that are going to be around them. Be open and honest with both your little one and their friends and family and continue to show praise when they do well in those situations.
  1. Point out good sharing when you see it in group settings!
  • Remember when we said earlier those toddlers tend to imitate everything we do? They will do the same with friends and peers when they are in a comfortable play setting. By praising the sharing of another child, it will help your child realize how great sharing can really be.
  1. Try not to force it – it’s okay not to share sometimes!
  • It’s totally normal for toddlers to be resistant to sharing, especially when it comes to certain prized possessions. It’s okay to teach your toddler that in some situations, we don’t always have to share. By helping them feel secure in this decision, it may help them make better decisions next time.

If you have more than one child and they’re often mixing up their stuff and fighting over which belongs to who, give the Split Name Label Pack a try, it’s a pack of name labels for two kids – they can label who owns what and it works wonders for curbing sibling rivalry!

  1. Respect their favorite toys!
  • Some children might have a favorite thing that makes it hard for them to share it in group settings. Have your child identify this item and allow them to put it aside when it comes to having playdates.
  1. Make it fun!
  • Kids respond best to FUN! Although sharing is an important life skill, it can also be a really fun one to learn. Play all the games, sing all the songs and just try to implement all types of sharing in your family’s day to day life.

While it is important to start these things young, your child will learn a lot about sharing as they get older as well. Things like daycare or group play settings will help them when it comes to learning to share amongst their peers. They will learn even more about sharing when it comes time to start school – things like taking turn on the swing set or waiting for their time at a certain Kindergarten station. Now let’s get sharing!


Meet Alina - Alina is a mom of 2 from Ontario, Canada who is also a Journalism Graduate turned Content Creator and Mom Blogger. You can find her often on ice cream dates with her family, or cozying up with popcorn for a movie night in. She loves to write and create content that speaks about motherhood and the madness that surrounds it!

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