Younger children can find it difficult taking turns. At home some may be allowed to go first each time. It was youngest to oldest in my house for some time and my brother got to go first! Other children may not have experienced turn taking at all. For example, if they are an only child or if they don’t play such games with their parents. It’s a difficult thing to do when your whole body is telling you to go first, be first, and have more than one go at a time. This is especially true when you’re having fun or feeling competitive!
Classroom teachers often have their own methods of helping the children to ‘take turns nicely’. For whole group discussions, it is a great idea to let the children know the rules of engagement before they start. Some teachers may go for a particular order, reverse alphabetically, or the way they are naturally sat. Others have ways to randomise, such as throwing a teddy to the next person to show them that it is their turn. I thought this quoits set might be quite a fun way to do it. You pass a ring round and the children can take their turn if they hook it. [Image contains an affiliate link.] A tighter circle, or a mat to stand on to have your go is recommended for the younger ones. Of course, now I have given you the dilemma of how to organise taking turns with the ring!
Taking Turns – Your top tips
This quite kinaesthetic idea might make some supply teachers recoil in horror. Getting the children to sit quietly and listen to each other is hard enough for some. Consider this however: give them an inch, and they may just be grateful for it, rather than playing you and taking the mile? What do you think? How do you organise the little ones and help them to learn about taking turns? Let us know!