Fun Games to play at home to promote sharing and turn taking

We’re getting very excited – J will start school in September, proper full time school and he’s eager to go. To help him prepare and be ready to start we’re playing through the summer developing skills that he needs. One of the skills that will be essential in school (reception class in the UK or Kindergarten in the USA) are skills in sharing and turn taking and we’ve been focusing on them playing some very simple games that will help develop these as well as introducing rules as well.

Simple Games to play at home that promote sharing and turn taking helping to prepare your child for kinder in the fallWe started to introduce some simple games from Christmas this year – things that need J to take turns and wait as well as ones that he has to share the counters, ball etc in as well. Here are our favourites

Four in a row/Connect four

A simple game and lots of fun to play – taking turns is essential and with the different colour counters we found it easy to get J to take turns first – it was almost as if removing it from J’s turn our turn to the white’s go and the red’s go he was able to take turns. With the added bonus of counting and problem solving it’s a fun game for you and your child to play together.


Those little legs need an exercise and soccer is perfect for practising sharing and turn taking – kicking the ball to each other or even taking turns at aiming at the goal helps to develop a team spirit as well as prepare your child for starting school and games that they will encounter in the school day.


Another fun game for taking turns – whether you buy a pack of flash cards, memory pair cards with your child’s favourite characters on or even make your own memory card game you can work on turn taking with your child choosing which cards to pick and waiting for their turn – there is many sitting on hand moments in our house when J knows which card is the matching pair and wants to shout out (another valuable skill for little ones to learn is to not call out).


We start off sharing out our cards – it’s a game we play often so there is a big temptation for J to share the cards out unfairly giving himself a bigger pile to put him at an advantage from the start but working on sharing out resources is another useful area for children preparing to start school and then take turns to turn the cards over. We tend to play with animal, letter or number cards that we have collected over the last year including ones that we have cut out from our favourite magazines.

Pop Up Pirate

We’re still fairly pirate mad after J’s birthday last summer and pop up pirate has been a great game for J to work on turn taking with him because it can be up to 4 players we’ve had fun with him and 3 of his friends playing together taking turns – again it has helped saying “red’s turn” etc…

Pop up Pirate - a fun game for taking turns with preschool and Kinder aged children

Hide and Seek

Such a simple game add in the element of taking turns counting and hiding and you can have fun from both sides, it’s also been a lot of fun getting J used to the rules and the idea of the game – I don’t know how many times I have been told “Go and hide under the table Mummy and I will find you”.

With these simple inexpensive or free games you can start to prepare your child for Kinder or Reception year at school in a fun playful way.

Get ready for K through PlayWe’re joining together with 6 fabulous blogs to help you Get Ready for K through Play over the summer – week 1 last week was all about developing language skills – pop on over to Mom to 2 Posh Lil Divas and find out more as well as the links to ideas from Toddler Approved, Mama Smiles, Coffee Cups and Crayons and Mess for Less.

This weeks focus is all about Social and Emotional Skills needed for Kindergarten (reception year). Pop along and check out the other great ideas

Top 5 Social Skills for Kindergarten Readiness – Mom to 2 Posh Lil Divas

Teacher Says: A Following Directions & Listening Game – Coffee Cups and Crayons

Social and Emotional Skills for Children – Mama Smiles

Helping the Shy Child Prepare for Kindergarten – Mess for Less

– Toddler Approved

 Check back next week to see what other fun playful ideas we will be sharing to help prepare your child and you for Kindergarten.

Playing Games at home that promote sharing and taking turns getting your child ready to start kindergarten in the fall

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Cerys is a marine biologist, environmental educator, high school teacher and now mum. She's passionate about supporting learning at school at home, bringing books alive, giving kids life skills and exploring the world around us sharing Creative, Family Friendly, Fun Ideas for the whole family on Rainy Day Mum

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  1. Gina says

    Nice post, sharing and turn-taking will be lovely skills once fully acquired at our house. When our children play hide and seek they shout, ‘I am here in the ……’ in loud giggly voices! We keep trying to explain they are trying not to be found but they get so excited!

    We also play The Kindness Game. Especially when we go shopping to Tesco. The idea is you have to keep a close eye on everyone else and spot them being kind to you or someone else. Each kindness only counts once. When we get home we go from youngest to oldest asking who they saw being kind and what they did. Currently we ask for 3 kindnesses per person but we started about a year ago with only one each. Good things are they are learning to see what other people do for kindnesses and they get a kick out of being kind to other people so they can be ‘spotted’ by someone else. It is very much a work in progress!

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