Orderly/Territorial during play - Mothering Forums

Forum Jump: 
 
Thread Tools
#1 of 11 Old 09-14-2010, 09:30 AM - Thread Starter
 
chekhovgirl's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 240
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Hi,

I'll try to make this as succinct as possible!

I'm posting this here because it seems related to Montessori. My son is very orderly/territorial, and it seems to become a problem when we are playing around other children, especially children he doesn't know very well- like out at a play space or playground. For instance, he'll be playing with cars he has lined up to go down a track and if another child comes along and grabs one of the cars (which my son is not touching at the time, but in his mind he is "playing" with them), then he will physically grab the toy away from the child instead of talking to them, or something like this happened the other day and he and the other child were pushing each other- don't know who started pushing first.

Anyway, my point is that whereas the concept of "not touching somebody else's work" is played out more often in a classroom, that doesn't always happen while out and about. Plus, parents often expect children to share or take turns when they're not done with things. I am not condoning my child pushing another child or tackling them for a toy, I teach him to use his words (which he does more often with children that he knows), but it is my experience that my son is always given the "blame" in a situation because he reacts physically, although he was provoked by a child doing something to him, taking something away, sometimes repeatedly and his patience is worn down.

This happened the other day and I watched from afar (playing with my other son) as the other child's parent told my son it wasn't nice (to try to take back the toy he was playing with) and whisked her crying son away. Then then one of the parents came and swiped the toy again from my son, which left my son crying. When the other child didn't want the toy, she came back and put it in a place where my son couldn't see it was available to play with again...

Again, I'm not condoning my son doing things physically to other children, but I'm tired of people seeing him as the perpetrator or bully. Any advice on how to deal with this with my son and with other people? I can't stop thinking about it. My son has a good heart and I don't like that he's being made to feel like this when he is just trying to play.
chekhovgirl is offline  
#2 of 11 Old 09-14-2010, 09:46 PM
 
kittykat2481's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 497
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
In situations like what you describe, you just have to stand up for your son. If a child wants a toy that DS is playing with and DS doesn't want to share, I encourage him to tell the child that they can play with it when he's finished with it. More often than not, he finishes up quickly and is happy to share, and I honestly think it's just because I've given him the responsibility of being polite, and he feels accomplished in that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by chekhovgirl View Post
This happened the other day and I watched from afar (playing with my other son) as the other child's parent told my son it wasn't nice (to try to take back the toy he was playing with) and whisked her crying son away. Then then one of the parents came and swiped the toy again from my son, which left my son crying. When the other child didn't want the toy, she came back and put it in a place where my son couldn't see it was available to play with again...
In this situation, I would intervene and encourage DS to offer to share when he was finished, or to offer a way for both children to play together if possible. (Actually, I rarely even use the word share because of the connotation that it basically means you have to give the other person whatever they want whenever they ask for it, or you're not sharing.) When that parent snatched the toy away, I would have absolutely told DS (loud enough that the parent could hear me) that that wasn't a nice thing for that person to do and I'm sorry he's sad. We can get the toy back with the other child is finished, or he can go ask for it back. After all, we can't control the actions of everyone around us, but I can hopefully teach my child to respect himself and others, and console him when he is wronged.

Kat, wife to and mommy to (Dec 07).
kittykat2481 is offline  
#3 of 11 Old 09-14-2010, 09:54 PM
 
spedteacher30's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 1,065
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
We're a former Montessori family and my son's new Reggio preschool has trained him out of this, but when we were in the height of it, we would talk ahead of time about how the children's museum/park/library/etc was a "sharing place" and how if there were toys he didn't want to share, he needed to pick ones he was willing to share. it worked OK, but not great.

but, I think if a parent had done what you described the other parents doing, I would have not been very graceful or courteous!
spedteacher30 is offline  
#4 of 11 Old 09-14-2010, 10:12 PM
 
carmel23's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Pacific Northwest
Posts: 5,218
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I usually try to stay by and model the behavior I'd like my son to learn. It takes some foresight, and it takes awhile for children to develop that! Especially if they're absorbed in playing.

I say to the child," oh, would you like a turn? Yes, you may have a turn. Let's let (name of my child) finish his turn first." I then turn to my child and say, "would you like to let our friend have a turn with this car, since you have so many? Or would you like to give it to him as soon as you are finished?"

And then my son will usually decide if he can part with it or give the child the toy after a minute more or so (10 minutes at the most? Or when we leave?... whenever....)

 hh2.gif  ~~~~~~~~~~hh2.gif
 

carmel23 is offline  
#5 of 11 Old 09-14-2010, 11:05 PM
 
eepster's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: growing in the Garden State ............
Posts: 9,010
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I've been very clear with DS that the appropriate response to someone taking a toy he is playing with is "Excuse me, I was still playing with that. May I have it back." Almost always the other kid gives him the whatever right back. On tVe occasions when he says this to a really little kid who doesn't understand him, the child's parent usually responds by intervening to make sure DS gets his whatever back.

That said, I do not let him hog all the trains at the train table in the bookstore. It is not a Montessori work that is designed for solitary contemplation. The bookstore isn't his classroom, and there aren't shelves full of alternative works for the other kids that come by to use. If there are 3 kids who want to play and there are 6 trains, DS is only entitled to 2 of those trains. If the other kids really only want a single train each, then extra trains are fair game, but DS can't just claim he is playing with all 6 trains just b/c he was there first.

Timmy's Mommy WARNINGyslexic typing with help of preschooler, beware of typos
eepster is offline  
#6 of 11 Old 09-14-2010, 11:49 PM - Thread Starter
 
chekhovgirl's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 240
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by spedteacher30 View Post
We're a former Montessori family and my son's new Reggio preschool has trained him out of this, but when we were in the height of it, we would talk ahead of time about how the children's museum/park/library/etc was a "sharing place" and how if there were toys he didn't want to share, he needed to pick ones he was willing to share. it worked OK, but not great.

but, I think if a parent had done what you described the other parents doing, I would have not been very graceful or courteous!

Thank you all for your input. I didn't feel like being graceful or courteous, but it was a little girl's birthday party in a very contained space, so I certainly didn't want to cause a stir...if it wasn't then I probably would have handled it differently.

These are very good suggestions of how to deal with it, and I think that I will keep reinforcing with DS how to deal/what to say. However, these are some specific problems that keep us from getting to that point where he is using his words:

- He doesn't like confronting children by talking to them (especially children he is not familiar with). If I say, "Tell the boy you were playing with it and you'd like it back." He says, "You tell him!" and refuses to. He has done this for a long time.

- Most of the time there is some kind of physical confrontation that upstages the actual event of the child taking what he was using before I can step in, which makes it hard because the child or parent is then closed off to working it out.

Also, a little more background about my DS- he was in a infant and toddler M programs at the school where I worked from 6 months to 2.3 years. He was home for this past year and just started M again last week at 3.5, so it's not like I feel that the order of the M classroom is affecting him, or maybe it's just that I kind of deal with things with a M philosophy...how is Reggio different?

We had an incident today at the library where they had one of those tables that have magnets you put underneath to move things around inside. My son was at the table and a little girl about his age or a bit older was there as well. My son was moving a red car around (his FAVORITE color) when the girl used her magnet to "take" the car. He immediately tried to grab her magnet and take it back from her and when I tried to move him away from her (he was physically pushing her- not with the intent of hurting her, but it was a side effect of him getting in front of her to grab the magnet) he started having a physical tantrum. We did the whole "Tell her you'd like it back" thing with him saying "You do it". The mother of the girl made her give him a turn with the red car which left her crying and made me feel bad, but I didn't really know what to do...
chekhovgirl is offline  
#7 of 11 Old 09-14-2010, 11:56 PM - Thread Starter
 
chekhovgirl's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 240
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
(Actually, I rarely even use the word share because of the connotation that it basically means you have to give the other person whatever they want whenever they ask for it, or you're not sharing.) When that parent snatched the toy away, I would have absolutely told DS (loud enough that the parent could hear me) that that wasn't a nice thing for that person to do and I'm sorry he's sad. We can get the toy back with the other child is finished, or he can go ask for it back. After all, we can't control the actions of everyone around us, but I can hopefully teach my child to respect himself and others, and console him when he is wronged.
Yeah, I hate the whole "You have to share!" thing, which, as you said, basically means, give up your toy now, or give it up within whatever the other child/parent thinks is a reasonable amount of time. Since DS won't say it, I tell the child that they can have a turn when he's done. That doesn't mean it's going to be any time soon! I'm certainly not going to rip something out of my child's hands before he's done to pacify another child, and I don't demand that of other children if my DS wants to use something.

Believe me, I sooo wanted to do exactly what you said about letting the parent hear me tell DS that it wasn't a nice thing to do, but as I said, it was a birthday party...grrr...and I knew a couple of families there, but this family was friends with such a larger amount of people there, that I kind of felt like an outsider, if you know what I mean. I kind of felt like they were all looking at me like my son upset their child.
chekhovgirl is offline  
#8 of 11 Old 09-15-2010, 12:24 AM
 
kittykat2481's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 497
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by chekhovgirl View Post
Yeah, I hate the whole "You have to share!" thing, which, as you said, basically means, give up your toy now, or give it up within whatever the other child/parent thinks is a reasonable amount of time. Since DS won't say it, I tell the child that they can have a turn when he's done. That doesn't mean it's going to be any time soon! I'm certainly not going to rip something out of my child's hands before he's done to pacify another child, and I don't demand that of other children if my DS wants to use something.

Believe me, I sooo wanted to do exactly what you said about letting the parent hear me tell DS that it wasn't a nice thing to do, but as I said, it was a birthday party...grrr...and I knew a couple of families there, but this family was friends with such a larger amount of people there, that I kind of felt like an outside, if you know what I mean. I kind of felt like they were all looking at me like my son upset their child.
Ugh, I'm familiar with those situations, and they're terrible! All you can really do is just try to get through it. I think you're doing well to use the words for your son if he's not comfortable enough to use them himself yet. He is only 3, after all. I think you're on the right track. My DS is very much like your own, and I'm sure it is part of being in a M school. That's ok with me though. I just assume he's that much more socially aware than the other children. lol

Kat, wife to and mommy to (Dec 07).
kittykat2481 is offline  
#9 of 11 Old 09-15-2010, 02:46 PM
 
carmel23's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Pacific Northwest
Posts: 5,218
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I would really encourage your child to practice using his words. I would role play with him, and if he really wants it back, he has to speak up. Even if he has always wanted you do it, now is a great time to start.

 hh2.gif  ~~~~~~~~~~hh2.gif
 

carmel23 is offline  
#10 of 11 Old 09-15-2010, 02:55 PM - Thread Starter
 
chekhovgirl's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 240
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by carmel23 View Post
I would really encourage your child to practice using his words. I would role play with him, and if he really wants it back, he has to speak up. Even if he has always wanted you do it, now is a great time to start.
Role playing is a great idea, thanks! Yes, I really want him to do it on his own.

I've been feeling very down about all of this. His first swim lesson today made my week. He went right in with no fuss- he had an experience with a bad (yelling) teacher in the past. He's the only one in his "class" and when they were done the instructor told me what a sweet child he is
chekhovgirl is offline  
#11 of 11 Old 09-16-2010, 04:42 PM
 
prettypixels's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: MD
Posts: 2,835
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by chekhovgirl View Post
Hi,

I'll try to make this as succinct as possible!

I'm posting this here because it seems related to Montessori. My son is very orderly/territorial, and it seems to become a problem when we are playing around other children, especially children he doesn't know very well- like out at a play space or playground. For instance, he'll be playing with cars he has lined up to go down a track and if another child comes along and grabs one of the cars (which my son is not touching at the time, but in his mind he is "playing" with them), then he will physically grab the toy away from the child instead of talking to them, or something like this happened the other day and he and the other child were pushing each other- don't know who started pushing first.

Anyway, my point is that whereas the concept of "not touching somebody else's work" is played out more often in a classroom, that doesn't always happen while out and about. Plus, parents often expect children to share or take turns when they're not done with things. I am not condoning my child pushing another child or tackling them for a toy, I teach him to use his words (which he does more often with children that he knows), but it is my experience that my son is always given the "blame" in a situation because he reacts physically, although he was provoked by a child doing something to him, taking something away, sometimes repeatedly and his patience is worn down.

This happened the other day and I watched from afar (playing with my other son) as the other child's parent told my son it wasn't nice (to try to take back the toy he was playing with) and whisked her crying son away. Then then one of the parents came and swiped the toy again from my son, which left my son crying. When the other child didn't want the toy, she came back and put it in a place where my son couldn't see it was available to play with again...

Again, I'm not condoning my son doing things physically to other children, but I'm tired of people seeing him as the perpetrator or bully. Any advice on how to deal with this with my son and with other people? I can't stop thinking about it. My son has a good heart and I don't like that he's being made to feel like this when he is just trying to play.

I think it's important for other kids to learn some manners and *ask* before they grab something he is obviously using. Gah, that drives me up the wall. If some other adult came over here and grabbed this laptop right now, I would not say "Well it's time for me to take turns." That doesn't make responding physically ok, but it is definitely understandable. I would personally try to head this stuff off at the pass. If possible! When you see a child approaching your sons tantalizing toys, maybe step in front of them.
prettypixels is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Drag and Drop File Upload
Drag files here to attach!
Upload Progress: 0
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Mothering Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
If you do not want to register, fill this field only and the name will be used as user name for your post.
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off