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Child Stealing


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Hi all

I have a little girl in my Reception class who has taken items from other children 3 times now! This time she took a childs snack and put it in her school book bag. She never owns up and definately knows she is doing wrong. Her parents are coming in to see me tomorrow I think they have spoken to other parents and may challenge the way I handled the situation. has anyone come across this situation before?

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Its a stage that alot of kids go through although she is a bit late to being doing it in reception. She's probably quite young for here age?

I have had both boys and girls do it especially in the last term before they go on to school. They will swear blind that they didn't take it and that they don't know who's it is and usually will say it is theirs. I wouldn't make to much of it.

but maybe check this little girls things before she goes home. I would just have a look in her bag or things and say your checking that all things are in the right place, before she goes home. If you find anything then just say "oh how did this get here and don't you think we should put it back in the right place which is some one elses bag."

I'm sure she knows its wrong but she is obviously probably used to getting what she wants. explain that you can't always have things especially if they belong to some one else. Its a bit like learning to share.

I expect the parents are mortified they usually are, but it is a thing stage what ever you want to call it that some children do. Explain that its not theirs and and put it back in the right place.

hope that helps

good luck with the parents but I would reassure them not to worry to much

steph

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Hi Mottie,

 

I work in a private day nursery, so things may be slightly different in how we would handle a situation like this. I have not come across any child stealing, but i have had situations where upon children have taken a toy that a child has brought in from home for our cirlce time discussions and put it into their own tray. When this happens, i will sit the children down and we discuss the difference between asking someone can you have a turn with their special toy from just taking the toy as this could be seen as stealing something. If a child did steal something i would not discuss the matter with other parents, only with the parent of the child involved with the stealing. If a child is stealing it might be a cry for help, do you have any other concerns about this child. Maybe you could do small group activities using books and or puppets to get the message across that stealing is wrong and perhaps consider doing an activity about feelings asking questions like, what is your favourite teddy? Is he special to you? How would you feel if someone took him away from you without you knowing? and so on. If this child is stealing food, consider is she being fed properly at home? These are just a few things for you to consider, sorry if i wasn't of much help, i am sure you will have lots of other responses soon.

 

Rosepetal

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Thanks guys it's a tricky one as I feel other parents have been contacted and rumours spread as to how I dealt with the incident. All the children were lining up to go out to play this one little boy couln't find his snack so I asked the children if they had seen it. Two girls said that they had seen this girl with the snack, so I asked her if she had seen it or moved it. She looked incredibly guilty and refused to say anything! I asked her some more questions but still no response. I then checked her book bag and found the snack as she has done this twice before I was asked her what it's called when you take something which does'nt belong to you. Other children replied "stealing" I then sent her to sit on the carpet and sent the other children out to play. I told her she would have to miss play time and as I was on duty I went out with the other children. After breaktime I spoke to her on her own and explained why we don't take things which belong to other people. I also told her that if it happened again she would have to go to see the head mistress. She is avery bright girl although young in the class. I am dreading her parents coming in tomorrow as I don't know what has been said!

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We have had a few in both reception and yr1. There are a multitude of reasons, poor social skills, testing boundaries, immaturity, having lots of siblings where it is usual to just take what you want, families being financially poor and child not having many toys etc, or in the case of bluetack many children just want to take a piece of school home with them!

Don't worry about the parents, reassure them that their little darling is not a kleptomaniac (is that the right word?) and that it is a stage that alot of kids go through. The parents are probably horrified about it rather than at the way you dealt with it. Suggest that you could check in her possessions before she goes home and return anything before school finishes, as by the time she gets home it will have probably been forgotten about. Maybe do a circle time with the class about possessions and how it feels if something you like or need is taken away.

Try not to worry the parents probably just want to know what actually happened or what they can do.

Jo

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