Help your little ones form great friendships.

How to Teach Children About Friendship

by Kelly Sundstrom

Let's face it, sometimes the confidence and innocence of little children makes it easier for them to form instant friendships than their parents. However, the impulsiveness of toddlers and preschoolers can often make them have trouble getting along with their friends, too. Don't worry! Just because you have a child who screams at or snatches toys away from her friends now, doesn't mean that she will always act that way. You can teach little children about making and keeping friendships in a fun and joyful way with different interactive crafts and activities.

1. Friendship Storytime

1 Teach toddlers and preschoolers about friendship by using picture books and puppets t create a friendship storytime. Check out a few friendship-related books from your local library, such as, " Just My Friend & Me," by Mercer Mayer, " Best Friends for Frances," by Russell Hoban and " Where is My Friend?" by Harriet Ziefert.

2. Friendship Storytime

2 Put a full-sized puppet or individual finger puppets on to one of your hands while you read the book about friendship out loud to your toddlers and preschoolers.

3. Friendship Storytime

3 Pause reading the book when you reach a place where you could act out a scene using the puppets to show the children how to make friends or keep friends. Children can understand the intricacies of friendship better if they can see it acted out with puppets.

4. Friendship Song Circle

1 Sing songs to teach toddlers and preschoolers about making and keeping friends. Do you love to sing songs with your little ones? Who doesn't! If you do not already know friend-related kid's songs, use a few well-known songs, such as "Because We're Friends," by Music with Mar, "Finding a Good Friend," by Kids' Value Pack or "We All Need Friends," by Dianne Baker.

5. Friendship Song Circle

2 Gather your little ones into a circle, or invite other mommies with their little ones over to create an even larger circle. Start by explaining what it means to be a friend.

6. Friendship Song Circle

3 Sing the friendship songs in front of the children a few times so that they can pick up on the lyrics. Invite the other moms to sing along as well. After a couple of times, the children will begin to sing the songs with you.

Items you will need

  • Picture books
  • Puppets

Photo Credits

  • Jupiterimages/Comstock/Getty Images