Bad Behavior: Playing With Toy Weapons
Why It’s Actually Not So Bad:
“A child makes himself known by his acts” (Proverbs ). We need to focus on the child’s acts—how he behaves in real life—not what his play theme might be. Is your child having fun? Listening to his playmates? Concerned if someone gets hurt? Then weapon play is OK. Preschoolers use good guy/bad guy play to make friends, explore and confront fears, and develop early morality. For kids it’s about saving people. It’s hero play. One more way kids sort out good and bad, right and wrong and explore ideas of life and death, protector and protected.
Keep it Appropriate: Just like any play, weapon play isn’t welcome everywhere. Keep the timing and location right. Not everyone’s comfortable with toy weapons either. Tell kids: “Michael might not like a sword pointed at him. You have to ask first. ”