With my newborn baby having colic, I am typing this post with one hand and rocking her with the other. So needless to say, not a lot gets done around here and my 2 year old child would be the first to tell you that! She knows my full attention can't be on her as much anymore but luckily she has realized that baby crying=no fun and is quick to hand me a paci.
But my toddler is also in that oh-so-fun stage we studied in Child Development 101: Piaget's Pre-operational Stage. Which basically means she is egocentric. Yes, at this age they can't yet grasp empathy. So they have no idea what others may be feeling, they are only about what they are feeling. Yep, it's all about them right now. Hence the term 'egocentric.'
My daughter has some great examples of this: "mine!" or " mmiiiine!" and "no!" or "no mommy".
When she plays with others her age, she wants whatever someone else has or refuses to share. Which I might add right here that it is completely normal at this age/stage, but it just makes it harder on us as parents! They are not quite there yet on learning to share. So that means it's up to me as her parent to model it for her.
In fact, just this morning my daughter was hogging the triangle musical instrument in her Kindermusik class and it took me several times of asking her to share and she finally gave it to another boy. So I praised her and hugged her for it and did the whole positive reinforcement stuff. And that is all we can do at this point, model, model, and when they follow through, encourage (praise) them for it.
But they are able to start understanding feelings now. I have used the Kimochi dolls that I talked about here and show her the basic 3: sad, mad, and happy. And I point out any feeling faces in her story books we read. So now when she sees a tear, she points and says, "sad" and when she sees happy faces she says, "happy!!"
Recently I came across some new fun feelings toys for kids and thought I'd pass them along. Here is one fun matching game by Alex Toys called Moody Monsters and you can order it on Amazon here: Alex Toys Moody Monsters Memory Game, Alex Little Hands Series
It says the feeling word at the bottom of each square, and if your child is as into matching games as mine is, it will be a sure hit!
Also new are the Moomin Feelings Flash Cards that come with 20 different feelings on them and are super cute! And a great price of 10$ too!
There is also a new app called the itouchilearn app on your iPhone that has feeling games on it. Check it out on itunes.com.
So can anyone else out there relate to the non-sharing stage? Don't worry, it's just a short phase that can actually be kind of cute to see how into themselves they are at times :)