What would your child do if you took away his or her toy?

While speaking with a colleague about Christmas and what his family’s traditions are, I was surprised at what he told me. He mentioned that his two kids, a six-year-old boy and a two and a half-year old girl, are the only grandchildren between his folks and his wife’s folks.  So, you can imagine, and you would be right, these kids get lots of love and spoiled with lots of stuff.

In an effort to curb the excess of toys received from family and friends, the parents came up with an idea. Because kids can open up a toy play with it for a little while, then toss it to the side and move on to the next toy, mom and dad came up with a brilliant plan. Instead of allowing the kids to open the abundance of toys and play with all of them then get bored, they hold back a few unopened toys each Christmas and on birthdays.  They are saving the toys until the children are at least eight years old, old enough to comprehend what it means to give to others.  When they get a bit older, the parents, along with the children, will give the unopened toys to other children whose parents can’t afford to buy toys. What a wonderful way to develop a giving character in children!

It’s not about taking away your child’s favorite toy, it’s about being cognizant of the balance between knowing how much is enough and what is excessive.  Raising kids with good character, rather than a me me me attitude, will make the world a better place and they will ultimately be happier, more contented, and intellectually advanced adults.