Promoting Social
Emotional Competence
Promoting Children’s
Success: Developing
Friendship Skills
Adapted for Kindergarten-Grade 1 from the Center on the Social and Emotional Foundations for Early Learning
by Genetta Gross, Margret Thorstenson, Melissa Binkley & Elizabeth Vorhaus
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Remember…
Social Skills are Important!
The single best childhood predictor of adult
adaptation is not school grades, and not
classroom behavior, but rather, the adequacy
with which the child gets along with other
children.
-Willard Hartup, President of International Society
for the Study of Behavioral Development
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Review…When Do We Teach Social
Skills?
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Discussion: Friendship Skills
Think about children who
are well liked and
friendly…
What do you notice about
their behavior that makes it
easier for them to make
friends?
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Friendship Skills
• Gives suggestions (play organizers)
• Shares toys and other materials
• Is helpful/ a team player
• Takes turns (reciprocity)
• Gives compliments
• Begins to accept similarities
and differences in others
• Understands how and
when to give an apology
• Begins to empathize
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Setting the Stage for Friendship
Skills
• Establish an atmosphere of friendship
• Include all children
• Set goals for children
• Use cooperative toys
• Build in opportunities
• Develop a plan for transitions, changes to the
schedule, and environment (Be proactive)
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Atmosphere of Friendship
• You should see:
• You should hear:
• Adults giving time and
• Adults comment positively
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attention to children
Children playing together
much of the time
Smiling faces
Laughing
Sharing; taking turns
Helpful actions
on children’s friendly
behaviors
• Adults speaking kindly to
one another
• Children complimenting
each other
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Set Goals for Children
• Observe individual children
and note friendship skills.
• Set meaningful goals for
each child.
• Provide children with time
and opportunity to learn and
practice skills.
Inclusive Setting
• Children of different ethnic
and cultural backgrounds,
gender and disability are
meaningfully included
• Learning activities and
routines support needs of all
children
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Activities to Support Friendship
Skills
Use Cooperative Toys
Toys that naturally lend themselves to two or more
children playing together
Examples:
• Balls
• Board games
• Puppets
• Wagons
• Board Games
Clothes
• Dramatic Play
Materials
• Puzzles
• Role Plays
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Friendship Can
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Planting Seeds of Friendship
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Friendship/Compliment Tree
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Friendship Quilt
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Friendship Journals
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Activity: Action Planning
• Select 2 friendship activities you will introduce to your
classroom
• In large group, how will you introduce the friendship skill
related to that activity
• Play Organizers
• Giving Complements
• Share
• How & When to
• Taking Turns
Apologize
• Empathy
• Being Helpful
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Questions?
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Mod 2.2 - Developing Friendship Skills