How to Stop Kids From Fighting Over Toys

I posted a blog recently about how to teach sharing but at some point, your kid is probably going to get into a little fight over toys with a sibling or a friend. It’s really common and developmentally normal but let’s talk about five ways to avoid these tussles.   

#1 Be Proactive 

If you know that a certain toy is a consistent problem, consider getting rid of it or putting it away for a few days and then only pulling it out only during certain times when you’re there to mediate the playtime with it.    

#2 Distract 

Distraction is huge, right? Maybe try a different activity or put on a song to snap them out of the fighting.   

#3 Toys go “Night-night”

So if the fighting is continuing and you’ve tried some different strategies or even tried to teach the sharing, but it’s not working then you need to have some natural consequences. If the kids are constantly fighting then you could explain to them, “Fighting means toys go ‘night-night.’” This would mean that the toys they’re fighting over will go into a bin out of reach. I usually have a special bin marked “night-night.” It has a moon or a star taped on to it. You’re might have a tantrum in response but over time, they will learn that there are consequences for fighting and hopefully fight less to avoid losing toys to the ‘night-night’ bin.  

#4 Use a Timer

The timer could be used to initiate taking of turns with toys, or it could be used to signal that the activity is going to change. I hope you found this helpful. Happy talking with your little toddlers!   Disclaimer: I am a licensed speech-language pathologist in San Diego, California. This video is meant to be a general education for parents and therapists. Every child is different and this should not be taken as medical advice. Please consult with a professional in your area.  

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