When it comes to readiness for kindergarten and social skills, 2 of the most important for little ones to learn are sharing and taking turns. Yesterday, I blogged about some ways to practice sharing when camping. Today’s focus is learning to take turns. Camping has lots of opportunities to practice this. Before the day even starts, in small tents and campers, people may need to take turns getting up. Then, there is the issue of the limited bathroom facilities. Meal times may need everyone to take turns because of small stoves, help needed around the campfire, more sitters than chairs, etc. Campers need to take turns helping with chores such as dishes, sweeping out the trailer, bringing water, and more.
Being able to take turns is important for group situations such as playdates, preschool, and such unstructured time as playground fun. Taking turns has even been the subject of research, and not just for children. One study (Schoenhof, et al, 2006) investigated how adults take turns in a traffic congestion game. Another paper states that “… it serves as a prototype for more general forms of reciprocity.” (Vanderschaaf and Skyrms, 2001) I think, possibly, this means that taking turns is the basis for give and take in relationships. We all experience these situations on an everyday basis. For little ones, being able to share and take turns will help for more than kindergarten readiness. Now, if the rain would let the sun take a turn, camping would be a lot more fun.