I have two young daughters who often play together. They also play with neighbor kids and therefore share toys, bikes, and experiences.
I love when kids genuinely play together. They often come up with solutions that some of our leaders could learn to model.
But at times a child will want to play with their own toy by themselves. And whether someone else wants to play with their toy does not really matter to them. It’s their toy and they have no problem saying no.
As adults, we often feel obligated to tell them to “learn to share”. I am often the first one. But I wonder how valid this is. Knowing that my child does have experiences of community, should she always be willing to share what she has? Isn’t it also respecting her than to say “it’s ok for her to be selfish”?
I own a car. While I have no problem lending it to a friend in need of a ride, I also know no one would “force me” to share my car.
So why should we force a child to share? Or even limit their time of pleasure? (as in take turns).
When it is a game or object shared by the community, I love the idea of teaching them the joy of common experience, but when it is something they consider their own, I feel that respecting their desire for play is a much needed allowance.
How does it get any better than that?