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Classmate took my Son's Christmas gift, opinions?

Today was a gift exchange in my Son's class but he also exchanged a gift with his best friend on the bus. He got one of those wooden toys that you press the button on the bottom & the character flops down then pops up when you let go. He put it in the netted area on his backpack when he got it this morning. When it was time to leave class he saw another boy with it. He asked the boy is that yours? & he said yes I got it out of my backpack. My Son said I think that's mine. Then he said the Teacher told everyone to go & catch their bus. He came home & looked for his gift & the netting on his backpack was all ripped & a hole in the bottom. His toy was gone. He cried so hard that he couldn't get a grip for a while. So I was thinking of emailing that boys Mom & just mentioning if her Son had my Son's gift. My DH said No, just drop it. I guess I will just drop it. But if that was my child, I would really want to know if my Son took another child's toy. He should know by this age that is wrong to do. What is your opinion? This is kindergarten & the other boy is Indian so I don't know how that Mom would react or if she'd get too mad at her Son. Opinions?


Asked by ILovemyPaulie at 5:30 PM on Dec. 21, 2012 in School-Age Kids (5-8)

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Answers (16)
  • i would explain to your kid that sometimes people see something they want, and there is no stopping them, I would tell him that it is not a big deal but the child might not have presents at home. We might have to give up things once in awhile, but YOUR child has a mommy and daddy who love him, so perhaps Santa took the gift for a child who really really needed it? I wouldn't make an issue, unless after Christmas something similar happens again.

    Answer by jerseydiva at 5:49 PM on Dec. 21, 2012

  • If my child stole, I would want to know. I wouldn't let race play a factor here.

    At least let the teacher know. There was an issue with one of DS's classmates in kindy who had a sticky fingers problem, but if everyone has brushed it under the rug, nothing would've been done about it. In that case, it wasn't a one off thing. He'd stolen from multiple kids in the class.

    Answer by NotPanicking at 6:35 PM on Dec. 21, 2012

  • The school will do nothing about it.
    I am sorry this has happened to your son.
    I would tell my son to tell the teacher when this sort of thing happens.

    Answer by Dardenella at 5:44 PM on Dec. 21, 2012

  • If my child stole, I would want to know. I wouldn't let race play a factor here.

    Answer by Ginger0104 at 6:26 PM on Dec. 21, 2012

  • I wouldn't make a huge deal out of it or email the mom, I would just let the teacher know calmly that it happened just so she is aware or if there are any more issues. By Christmas morning, your son likely won't remember it, and when he goes back to school, I'm sure everything will have been smoothed over by the buzz of the holidays.

    Answer by Mom-2-3-Girlz at 6:31 PM on Dec. 21, 2012

  • Wow, I am sorry that happened. What a bummer! He got it on the bus, then put it away, and then it was gone. So he barely had time to enjoy it. Plus, he knows someone took it (and that's upsetting & confusing.) Of course he was upset!

    I don't really have a clear idea of what I would do in that type of situation apart from really supporting my child & hearing him out for his feelings in response.

    Not sure, but wasn't anon questioning the suggestion to tell a child that maybe Santa took it to give to someone who really "needed" it?

    I don't think I would suggest to a child that taking someone else's toy is "okay" if the child doing the taking did it because he doesn't have presents at home, but I do think it makes sense to contextualize all behaviors. (Just like children hit for valid & important reasons, and understanding this fact does help others empathize, but it's not that hitting is "okay" or should be ignored/allowed.)

    Answer by girlwithC at 7:41 PM on Dec. 22, 2012

  • LOL, now I know you must be a great mommy!

    Answer by jerseydiva at 5:55 PM on Dec. 21, 2012

  • i think Anon is a twit, most little kids steal because they "want" something. I work with several Indian ladies, and the don't celebrate Christmas, I think the kid wanted it and took it, because he doesn't have a tree or Santa or Kwanza to celebrate, every year I give the Indian doctor I work for a Poinsettia, (my company makes me), he says give it to the old lady down the hall (the other doc). The kid is 5 and all of his friends get to take and get something, he wants to be the same, and is too little to underestand religion and what the customs are, you did the right thing, you go girl!

    Answer by jerseydiva at 6:37 PM on Dec. 21, 2012

  • I have to agree with the other posters and say to let the teacher know quietly so she can watch for it. There is not much your son could have done to prevent it as he put it in his backpack just like he was supposed to.
    Again I am sorry it happened to him.

    Answer by Dardenella at 8:05 PM on Dec. 21, 2012

  • First, I want to say how sorry I am that this happened to your son.

    After that, however, I'm afraid I would let it go. You can't prove that he took it, and at this point very few schools allow gift exchanges anymore because of problems that they cause. Complaining could be the thing that makes your school stop having them.

    Answer by ohwrite at 10:03 PM on Dec. 21, 2012

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