Teaching kids to manage their emotions and monitor their behavior can be a difficult task. It can be hard to explain to them why certain actions are hurtful or will cause others to not want to play with them. My daughter is currently 2 years old, so we are spending a lot of time working on sharing, controlling our temper and learning to be a good friend. So I was really excited when we were introduced to this new series about teaching kids to get along and given the opportunity to check it out.
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Teaching Kids How to Get Along
The Let’s Get Along series from Make Believe Ideas are a set of books that introduce important behaviors and characteristics that kids should learn. Each book follows a child in Miss Clayton’s class as he or she learns an important lesson about how they should act. The 4 books are written by Jordan Collins and illustrated by Stuart Lynch.
The characters deal with simple situations that kids will recognize, while the text does a great job of describing what the characters are feeling. This makes it really easy for kids to relate to these books and apply the lessons to their own lives. The illustrations are bright and colorful, using fun textures in unique ways. Each book also includes notes and tips for adults about how to use the book to get kids thinking about their own behaviors. There are tips you can use while reading the story, as well as questions to ask when you are done reading.
I found these books to be really helpful in explaining to my daughter why certain behaviors are important. I like that the lesson is really story based, so she enjoys reading them over and over. The fun illustrations really grab her attention, and the adorable characters are fun to read about.
Let’s Get Along: It’s Great to Share follows Sean as he and his classmates go on a field trip to the petting zoo. Throughout the day, Sean’s friends ask him to share things with them and he always says no. When his friends no longer want to include him, he gets upset and talks to Miss Clayton. She helps him discover why sharing makes you a good friend.
Let’s Get Along: It’s Great to Keep Calm tells Carly’s story. When the class gets the opportunity to make sock puppets for a sock puppet show, Carly decides that she will make the best one of all. She doesn’t follow the directions though and soon gets frustrated when her sock puppet doesn’t look like the others. A kind classmate teaches her an easy trick for calming down and offers to help her with her puppet.
Let’s Get Along: It’s Great to Work Together joins Tia and her classmates as they go on a scavenger hunt and try to win a special prize. Tia is certain that she knows how to win, so she refuses to listen to her teammates. When they end up losing the hunt, she learns an important lesson about listening to others and working as a team.
Let’s Get Along: It’s Great to Be Kind follows Connor as he and the class celebrate Dress Up Day. Connor is dressed as a king, so he decides that he can do whatever he wants. When his actions are unkind, his friends choose not to play with him anymore. Connor feels sad and lonely, so he decides to apologize and make it up to them. When his friends thank him for his kindness, he feels even better than a king.
Bringing The Lessons to Life
Creative Writing – Give kids the opportunity to show that they understand why these behaviors are important with this printable book. Each of the four behaviors from the books has two pages. On the first page for each behavior, have kids draw or write about a situation from their life where the behavior was important. Maybe they didn’t share their toy, or a friend didn’t share with them. Have them draw a picture or write about the experience.
Talk to them about what they drew as well as how the situation could have gone differently. Using the second page, have them write and/or draw how they (or their friend) could have behaved differently, and what would have happened. This gives kids an opportunity to reflect on their own behavior and come up with strategies to use the lessons from these books in their own lives.
Behavior Chart – Encourage kids to practice these positive behaviors while providing them with a visual representation. There are lots of fun behavior charts available, or you can make your own! Check out these fun ideas from some of my favorite fellow bloggers:
1. Kids Chaos created this fun fairy tale rewards chart based on Jack and the Beanstalk.
2. What’s Up Fagans? uses a system with both a consequence jar and a reward jar.
3. My Bored Toddler offers a variety of fun printable reward charts in different patterns and styles.
4. Coffee and Carpool created these hole charts to promote good behaviors.
5. Red Ted Art offers these Valentine’s Day themed reward charts.
6. Red Ted Art also created this fun chart with movable bunnies to promote certain behaviors.
Does your family have a method for teaching these behaviors that you have found to be successful? Share in the comments below!