The train tracks have been a huge focus in our classroom lately. VR and JK especially enjoy building with them. Building on the shelves themselves has become more of a focus over the past few weeks. Last week, though, both JK and VR wanted to build on the same shelf. JK built his track first and felt very protective over it when VR approached to join him in using the track.
First, JK tried to simply shield his trains from VR. He clearly stated "Move Back!" to VR. VR did not move in any further but stayed where he was. I calmly stated that it seemed as if JK felt strongly about playing with the trains himself. VR nodded his head and remained close, watching JK play. After a minute or two more had passed, though, VR began to play on the other end of JK's track. I stayed close but was careful to not interfere with VR joining. I waited to see how JK would respond. He watched VR very closely then began to smile.
Next, both VR and JK drove their trains to the center of JK's track and met them up together while IS looked on. It was amazing to see how JK worked through his desire to play alone without my help. Because VR respected his need for space at the beginning and stayed calm even as JK insisted he moved back, JK was willing to accept VR's desire to join him in using the track. In the end, VR's patience with and respect for JK paid off!