The other day I was at Learning Express with my 5 1/2 year old daughter. They have these plasma cars and turtle ride on things that the kids can ride in the store.
My daughter was riding the plasma car and another girl was riding the turtle thing. There was a third girl (3 years old) who wanted a turn. She started throwing a tantrum "I WANT THE GREEN ONE, I WANT THE GREEN ONE!" Screaming and running around the store. This went on for about 10 minutes. Stopped when she got a turn, and started again when her turn was over.
I don't begrudge kids sharing or even waiting their turn, but here's my beef. As she is screaming, the mom just kept saying to me, "She has to learn to wait her turn", never once explaining to her daughter how exactly to wait. She would try to distract her (often mistaken for redirection), but her daughter was happier screaming.
I've been teaching for 15 years, and I specialize in preschool aged children. Preschoolers need direction and need to be taught how to behave appropriately. I so very wanted to intervene to give this little girl the instruction she so desperately needed, but I didn't feel it was my place.
Please feel free to comment if you have ever been someplace and wanted to help someone else's child deal with a situation.