One of the topics that I stress a lot about at the beginning of the year is friendship. Learning how to be a friend, how to keep a friend, and how to stay friends are such important skills for little learners.
So much of our classroom runs on collaboration and teamwork. Therefore, if students are unable to learn to be friends and work together, than not much work can really be done.
And because one of the best ways to teach is through picture books, here is a short list of my personal favorites that have helped me teach the theme of friendship!
If you haven’t read this book, it is a MUST-READ. It’s a story about a little boy who did not like the new boy down the street and did everything he could to let him know. He even enlisted his dad to help him serve up a special treat just for his enemy until he had a change of heart.
How many times have you heard a student yelling out loud from across the room, “He/She isn’t sharing?” Too. Many. Times. I know. lol… Therefore, this book is PERFECT! It’s filled with so many relatable scenarios and the illustrations will really keep your students glued to the pages! This book is a great segway to discuss about sharing supplies and equipment in the classroom.
Another good book to discuss about the importance of sharing is The Rainbow Fish. This is the sweetest story about a little fish who finds the true meaning of being a good friend and happiness by learning to share the one thing that makes him special.
Everyone knows about Chester Raccoon from The Kissing Hand, but have you read about Chester and the Big Bad Bully? Beginning of the year is the best time to talk about bullying and what the kids can do individually and as a class to address and prevent it. Bullying is a serious issue, and I speak to my kids in-depth to identify what is bullying, what is not bullying, and how we will address it together. Therefore, this book is a great addition to help students learn to become better friends to one another.
Every year we talk about names in our classroom and how each name is so unique and wonderful in their own way. If you have students who have unique and nontraditional names, this book really helps children understand the importance of accepting and celebrating others especially their names.
Ok, I love all of Mo Willems’ books. I really really do, but this one is particularly entertaining, funny, and fitting for teaching about friendship. I guarantee you that the kids will fall in love with Elephant and Piggie and come to learn how these two are really the ultimate best friends!
If you need additional resources of friendship, check out the resource below!
Disclosure: Some of the links are affiliated links, meaning that I will earn a commission if you click through the links and make a purchase.