How to prevent fights

Small fights are part of life. That’s how children learn to navigate life. But it’s nice to prevent unnecessary fights. What can you do, as a parent?

Tip 1: Until the age of two, children struggle to share. Before that age, you should not force them to share toys. Once they’ve turned three, they start learning how to share. That’s where you, as a parent, can step in. You can help them by telling them to ride the car one at a time, for example.

Tip 2: You could get two identical cars, for example. That way, two-year-olds can start to play together, next to each other, with similar toys.

Tip 3: While children or toddlers are playing, sit nearby, calmly. They will know you’re there if they need you.

Tip 4: Explain to your child what the other child means and what they want to do. You could say, for example, “Dylan wants to build a very high tower. Can you help?” That will help children understand each other better.

Tip 5: Sometimes fighting is a way to get your attention. It helps to pay attention to your child when they are playing nicely. Then they won’t feel the need to demand your attention in a negative way.

Tip 6: Respond positively when you see children helping each other. Explain what you’re seeing and give them a compliment.

Tip 7: Involve your child when another child is sad. Tell them to comfort the other child. Ask them whether they want to give the child a kiss, or whether they want to go and find a toy for them to play with.

Tip 8: Explain to your child how they should ask for something. So instead of saying, “I want that one”, you can teach them to say, “Can I play with the car now?”. When doing this, make clear agreements.