Sharing is always the better option
Sharing this is metaphor will help your child understand the need for sharing. with others.
It is designed to:
- understand the need to share
- see the benefits of sharing
- see how conflict arises from not sharing
- sharpen their problem-solving abilities when sharing
- build the internal mental resources needed to reach a realistic outcome
- resolve conflict with negotiation
Far ago in time there were two countries sharing a border with each other. One country was Stoneland and ruled by a queen. Stoneland was covered with boulders, rocks and stones. The people were not friendly and not into sharing with other people.
The other country was Grassland and ruled by a king. They had nothing but green fields. They didn’t have any pebbles let alone boulders, rocks and stones. The people were not friendly and not into sharing with other people.
One day the queen of Stoneland rode to the border as she had never seen Grassland. When the queen looked over the border she gasped and shook with jealousy and anger. She shouted at the top of her voice "I want what the king of Grassland has".
She went on “With all those fields we could grow many more crops and raise more cows. I could feed my people better.”
The king of Grassland, who had never seen a boulder, rock or stone, went to another part of the border. He wanted to look as what he was missing. The king was amazed and could not speak. He was so upset he had to write down what he wanted to say. He wanted what the queen had. Lots of boulders, rocks and stones. “With her boulders, rocks and stones we could build proper houses, schools, and hospitals.”
Even the king's palace was no more than a big hut made of wood and mud.
The queen said to her people, “We should clear our land of boulders, rocks and stones if we are going to grow more food to eat. Throw everything across the border.”
The farmers of Grassland who lived next to the border soon got fed up of this and went to their king and complained. “The people from Stoneland are throwing all their boulders, rocks and stones at us. We cannot harvest the crops and sell them at the market,” they said.
The king thought and said. “We need boulders, rocks and stones to build proper houses, schools, and hospitals".
The king thought some more and said "The queen is attacking us so we must be at war with Stoneland." “The queen is poor and the only weapons they have are boulders, rocks and stones. If they keep throwing them at us, they will run out of ammunition".
" We will move all the boulders, rocks and stones away from the border. As we will have all the things we need to build new and strong buildings.”
So the war went on and on for a long time. Grassland was full of boulders, rocks and stones and Stoneland had become stoneless!
Peace was declared and everybody in each country were happy. The queen’s people grew lots crops on the land. The people became healthier and contented. The king’s people pulled down their old mud and wood houses. They got the boulders, rocks and stones and built homes, schools, and hospitals. They were much more comfortable and contented.
The queen's became annoyed. They had plenty of food and had more babies so needed more houses, schools and hospitals. But they had no boulders, rocks and stones to build new homes, schools, and hospitals. They couldn't even repair their old buildings.
Across the border, the king’s people had lots of brand new buildings. But they had very few fields left so food was in short supply and they were getting hungry and ill most of the time.
The queens answer was simple, “We need another war to get our boulders, rocks and stones back.” So she declared war on the king and his people. Another war was declared. Yet again the boulders, rocks and stones were thrown over the border. The king’s and queen’s people kept the battle going for ages. Each wanted what the other country had.
No side was winning so no one was happy. The battle raged for a few years. It was difficult to tell where the border was between Stoneland and Grassland. Both countries looked the same!
A year later a wandering Wisery happened by and sat on a big boulder on the border. (A Wisery is a cleaver person who sees answers to problems when other people can't find one themselves).
Seeing the battle, the Wisery burst out laughing. “How stupid these people are." the Wisery thought. After speaking to villagers on both sides of the border the Wisery asked to meet the king and queen. The big boulder was declared a neutral place to meet.
When they sat down the king and queen, who had never met, scowled at each other. They did not like the other. “This long, long war, it's all your fault,” said the king to the queen. “You started all this by throwing boulders, rocks and stones at us for no reason.”
The queen got very angry and shouted back. “No it's not, it is your fault, you declared war on us to steal our boulders, rocks and stones.”
The king and queen stood up and scowled even harder. They went purple in the face and it looked like steam would burst out of their ears.
“Both of you can stop that right now and be quiet ” said the Wisery. Nobody had ever told the king or queen to be quite. They both looked at the Wisery as if they were going to give the wise one a telling off. But they could not speak and the Wisery carried on.
“This silly behaviour on this boulder and the war is not going to end your problem, is it?" "While you are angry, calling each names and acting like badly behaved children you are both losing out".
The Wisery went on, "Stoneland should have boulders, rocks and stones. Grassland should have fields and crops. The problem is that you each want what the other has. Then when you have got it you don't want it anymore. Neither of you needs all the stones or all the crops. So what are you going to do?"
Both the king and queen had never realised that they don't want all the rocks or all the crops but just enough was OK. were thinking about his question.
The king spoke to the queen “The stones are yours and the fields are ours". The queen agreed as she was thinking the same to herself. She said "Maybe we could share and trade. What if you grew food for us and swapped it for the boulders, rocks and stones that you need".
The king agreed and offered another idea. "What if some of your people and some of mine star sharing ideas on farming and building?" The queen thought it was agood idea and said "We can work together and not ﬁght each other anymore.”
The king and queen shook hands and a deal was done. The Wisery clasped both hands round theirs. This made it a deal that could not be broken. The people of both countries were happy. Sharing began the next day, Stoneland and Grassland were living peacefully together.
After a year of sharing the people forgot they were sharing a border between two countries which they had to keep crossing.