Free Friendship Preschool Lesson Plans - Stay At Home Educator (2024)

If your preschool doesn’t celebrate Valentine’s Day, a great alternative theme is friendship. Add these free friendship preschool lesson plans to your themed plans! Be sure to grab the download from the end of the post as well.

Friendship Activities for Preschoolers and Toddlers

Free Friendship Preschool Lesson Plans - Stay At Home Educator (1)

Kids seem to be natural at finding playmates and making friends. But learning how to be a good friend takes practice. These preschool friendship activities will help your little ones make and keep friends by showing kindness and respect for others.

We even have kindness preschool lesson plans and helping others preschool lesson plans, too!

FAQ About a Friendship Preschool Theme

Friendship can be a little abstract when it comes to preschoolers and toddlers. Here are some frequently asked questions about how to teach your preschooler about friendship.

How do you teach preschoolers about friendship?

One of the best ways to teach preschoolers about how to make and keep friends is by being a model for them during your own interactions with preschoolers. Show your preschoolers appropriate interactions and what it feels like to have a good friend by first being a friend to them.

Show them how to be kind and caring. When you help yourpreschoolersswaddle their baby doll, or open a cheese stick, or listen to their stories and answer their questions, your preschoolers will notice your kindness and want to be like you.

How do you promote friendship in the classroom or at playdates?

Modeling friendship is the first and best way to teach preschoolers about friends. Preschoolers also need to learn how to recognize their feelings and to reach out to an adult if they are feeling lonely or hurt.

Including friendship activities in circle time is also helpful. Teach your preschoolers to be good listeners, to respond to things that are said, and to be helpful. Friendship activities for preschoolers should also include collaborative activities and games, and random acts of kindness.

What are fun activities to teach friendship to young children?

The possibilities for friendship activities are endless. Try playing cooperative games, working together on a single shared art project, doing building activities at the block center, or doing a scavenger hunt together. There are countless picture books that teach preschoolers about friendship, too.

This post features six printable friendship activities; each one is designed specifically to be used with preschoolers and toddlers. They are an easy and effective addition to your friendship theme in preschool.

How do I teach my toddler to be a friend?

Around the age of 3, children are starting toplay more with each other and are forming new friendships. We talk about what makes a good friend, we do friendship activities, we read friendship stories, and we sing friendship songs. All year long.

Important Info About These Friendship Preschool Lesson Plans

The Learn at Home Preschool Lesson Plans are free lesson plans you can use to teach your preschooler at home.

All the preschool learningactivities are quick and easy to set up, designed to save time, requiring hardly any (if any at all) prep and only requires the most basic of household materials. This makes them especially easy for parents to implement…and this makes preschool teachers especially happy, too!

Just glance over the lessons each day, gather the very few materials needed, and you’re ready to go!

But don’t be fooled by the name “at home” preschool lesson plans! These activities work wonderfully in the classroom as well, and if you’re a preschool teacher who is remotely teaching you can send these lesson plans to your student’s parents.

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Meaningful Activities for Teaching Kindness and Friendship

These friendship activities are designed to help preschoolers understand what makes a good friend. They are centered around concepts of kindness, open-mindedness, and respect.

Literacy Activities for a Friendship Theme

Friendship Social Story – Social stories are great for young children because they are personalized and focus on one skill or behavior. Grab some photos of your preschooler or draw scenes that show being a good friend. Invite your preschooler to come up with a storybook that models friendship. Using simple sentences, help your preschooler come up with a short repetitive sentence that can be changed for each new page. For example, “When I _____, I am being a good friend.” Or maybe “I am a great friend because ______.” Add illustrations or pictures of your preschooler and read together frequently.

Name Recognition with Playdough – Helping your preschooler learn the letters in their name is a great start to preschool. Another way to model friendship and the ABCs is to practice other children’s names. Write the names of friends or family members on a piece of paper. Using playdough, form or stamp the letters to create names. Encourage your preschooler to say a kind word about each person as they work, or have them tell you all the reasons why that person is their friend.

Don’t Forget Picture Books About Friendship

I love elevating my lesson plans with great literature. Below is a friendship themed book list of some of my favorite picture books I read to my preschoolers.

Math and Science Activities for a Friendship Theme

Friendship Bracelet Counting – Using beads and pipe cleaners, encourage your preschooler to make friendship bracelets for friends and family. Count how many beads there are of each color or add a pattern. You can kick the activity up a notch by inviting your preschooler to say kind things for every bead. Sometimes, it’s good to just practice saying nice things, even if it’s to no one in particular.

Friendship Math Quilt – Cut up some colored paper into squares and glue them into a patterned “quilt” on another sheet of paper. Invite your preschooler to draw their friends and family on each square, along with their names. Then hang this quilt where your preschooler can see it and remember how much they are loved.

Friendship Fingerprints – Using a stamp pad, invite your preschooler to stamp their fingers onto the ink and press down on a piece of paper. Invite friends and family members to do the same, and write each person’s name under their fingerprints. How special! Talk to your preschooler about how everyone’s fingerprints are different, but sometimes it’s the things that make us different that can make us best friends.

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Playful Learning Activities for a Friendship Theme

Animal Charades – Animals can be our friends, too! Print off a page of animal pictures. Place each animal card in a bucket. Choose an animal from the bucket. Invite your preschooler to act out the animal silently, while others are guessing. Take some time to discuss how animals can be friends and how we can be kind to animals in return.

War Card Game – Games are a fun way to spend time with a friend, but sometimes it’s hard to lose. Grab a set of cards and remove the royal cards and joker. Then cut the deck in half. Face your preschooler and tell them to draw a card quickly. Whoever gets the highest-valued card, keeps the card. Pretend to act sad or upset when you draw the losing card, and have your preschooler practice saying uplifting things to make you feel better. Play until there are no cards left.

Race the Timer – Grab a partner for this one! How many jumping jacks can you do in 30 seconds? Can you do better in the second round? Challenge your preschooler and a sibling or friend to do better at whatever they choose. Keep that growth mindset and practice being an encouraging friend.

Social-Emotional Activities for a Friendship Preschool Theme

Learn to be a Good Friend – Go to YouTube and listen to the story Leonardo The Terrible Monster by Mo Willems. After reading, make a monster friend craft using coffee filters, plastic forks, and paint. Dip the forks in the paint and press the paint onto the flattened coffee filter. Add googly monster eyes! Make as many monster friends as you like. After they’re dry, invite your preschooler to imagine that each monster is a friend. What kind of things would these monsters do to show they’re a good friend?

Friends Show Kindness – Use thisprintable random acts of kindness challengeto encourage your preschooler to find ways to be kind to others. For each kind act your preschooler completes, have him or her add a heart to the calendar. Encourage your preschooler to think of other ways to show kindness and friendship that is not listed on the challenge. How could this challenge extend to family members and daily home life? Invite everyone in the family to join in on this challenge together!

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Just Plain Fun Activities for a Friendship Theme

Emotions Playdough – Friends have feelings and emotions, too! Start by making a circle out of play dough and then adding expressions on the circle to show emotions. Ask your preschooler why might your friend feel mad or shy? How can you help your friend be happy?

Friendship Dramatic Play – Grab dolls or action figures and role-play difficult friendship scenarios like taking turns, pushing or shoving, yelling, and saying mean words. Using the dolls or figures, model how to react in that kind of situation and encourage your preschooler to be a part of the solution. Remind him or her that they can do these exact things in real life with a real problem.

Safe Online Activities for a Friendship Preschool Theme

Online Story – Go to YouTube and listen to the book The Rainbow Fish by Marcus Pfister. After listening, ask your preschooler why Rainbow Fish felt happy at the end when he gave away all but one of his scales. How is that an example of friendship?

Be a Super Hero – Sing along with the infamous Jack Hartmann and his friendship superhero song. This video models examples of being a great friend, too!

Fox and Penguins Take Turns – This video models taking turns and being a caring friend. Learning strategies to manage social conflicts is a valuable tool.

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Get Your Free Friendship Lesson Plans Here

Think these friendship activities will make a great addition to your other friendship-themed activities? Go ahead and print them off! Click the box below and a PDF will be sent to your email.

Then keep reading for some friendship theme printables for preschoolers!


6 Friendship Activities for Preschoolers
Show and Tell Preschool Ideas: Around the World
Montessori Inspired Preschool Valentine’s Activities

Free Friendship Preschool Lesson Plans - Stay At Home Educator (21)

Sarah Punkoney, MAT

I’m Sarah, an educator turned stay-at-home-mama of five! I’m the owner and creator of Stay At Home Educator, a website about intentional teaching and purposeful learning in the early childhood years. I’ve taught a range of levels, from preschool to college and a little bit of everything in between. Right now my focus is teaching my children and running a preschool from my home. Credentials include: Bachelors in Art, Masters in Curriculum and Instruction.

Free Friendship Preschool Lesson Plans - Stay At Home Educator (2024)


How to teach preschoolers about friendship? ›

Mention how you use kind words, share, and help each other just like with friends at school. Teach children how to act when they are meeting new people. Practice shaking hands and manners that go with introductions. Use animals from the books that you are reading to discuss how animals live and work in groups.

How to make friends lesson plan? ›

10 mins Activity One: the qualities of a friend Ask the children to draw an outline of a person and to write down all the qualities they look for in a good friend. Share these together as a class and discuss. E.g. 'Sense of humour', 'Helpful', 'Kind', 'Likes sports', etc.

How to be a good friend lesson plan kindergarten? ›

For example, in the lunch hall, they could encourage a friend to sit with them; in gym, check to ensure they understand the rules of the sport; in the playground, involve them in creating a game or dance. They can use list of qualities/behaviours from earlier activity as inspiration.

How to explain friendship to a child? ›

A friend is a person who you know, like, and enjoy spending time with. Throughout your life, you will run into hundreds of people who may share similar hobbies or feelings with you. Some of these people will probably become your friend in the long run! A friend may help you when you are in trouble or need help.

How do I teach my 4 year old about friendship? ›

Helping preschoolers learn about being good friends

For example, you could say, 'That was a great idea to listen to each other before you decided what to play'. Or you can make suggestions if they need help with sharing. For example, 'What if you told a story where you both had a turn with the toy? '

What's a theme for friendship? ›

There are many themes that come to mind, such as respect and human dignity, love, and overcoming obstacles, however all of these themes are important to friendship, and that is why I believe the theme of friendship is so powerful throughout the course. Respect and human dignity are needed for all friendships.

What are the learning objectives for friendship? ›


The student will explore the meaning of friendship. The students will learn about the positive effects of kindness. The students will be able to list the characteristics of being a good friend. The students will be able to understand how friends can be trusted.

What makes a good friend lesson ideas? ›

Play a game

Ask everyone what it means to be a good friend. They may have ideas like sharing, helping people who are struggling, and being kind and helpful. Everyone should stand in a line in the middle of the space. Read out one of the 'Friendship scenarios'.

How to make friends activity? ›

11 Perfect Friendship Building Activities
  1. Create a Piece of Art Together. Getting creative is a great way to get to know someone. ...
  2. Invent a Secret Language. ...
  3. Create a Den or Secret Space. ...
  4. Cook Something Together. ...
  5. Have a Sleepover. ...
  6. Invent a Secret Handshake. ...
  7. Make a String Telephone. ...
  8. Play Imaginative Games.

What do you teach children about friendship? ›

Explain to them that being a good friend involves caring and sharing, as well as being kind and being a good listener. You can also talk about how friends make you feel happy and how they can help you when you're feeling sad or upset. As a parent, you're one of the most important role models in your child's life.

What is friendship in simple words? ›

What is friendship in simple words? Friendship is a close relationship between two or more people who care about and support each other. It is built on trust, honesty, and mutual respect. Friends often share common interests and experiences, and enjoy spending time together.

What is friendship simple quotes for kids? ›

Here are some great quotes that get at the heart of what friendship is all about:
  • “Nothing but heaven itself is better than a friend who is really a friend.” – Plautus.
  • “No road is long with good company.” – Turkish proverb.
  • “A true friend is the greatest of all blessings.” – Francois de La Rochefoucauld”

Why is friendship important in childcare? ›

Friendships can have a positive impact on a child's self-esteem and ability to navigate social situations throughout the rest of their lives. In fact, child psychologists find early childhood friendships contribute to children's quality of life and help them adjust to changes in their environment as well.

What is friendships in early childhood? ›

In early childhood, the key ingredients for forming friendships are opportunity and similarity. Like adults, children are drawn to those who share the same interests and they need constant opportunities to spend time together, play and interact together.

How can a teacher promote children's developing friendships? ›

7 ways to help your students make friends
  1. Get to know your students. ...
  2. Create a strong classroom culture. ...
  3. Pair students strategically. ...
  4. Give students responsibilities. ...
  5. Use sharing activities. ...
  6. Find out about social skills groups. ...
  7. Praise the positive.

Why is it important to build friendships in preschool? ›

Developing friendships in preschool helps teach children to connect with others, learn to share, and grow emotionally. While they're playing together, children are also learning about negotiation, compassion, and respect. These are skills that will serve them well beyond preschool.


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