Inside: We’ve set up our toddler and preschool classroom this week for the friends and family theme. We made a family tree and a friendship banner and sang some fun friendship songs!
Friends and family is always part of our toddler and preschool classroom, but we like to focus on it as a theme towards the beginning of the school year.
On the first day of school we ask our families to provide a copy of a family photo that we can display on our family bulletin board all year long. The children love to point their families out to their friends, and having a family photo in the room is comforting to a child who is experiencing some separation anxiety.
We also talk about being a good friend right from the first day of school.
The friends and family theme can involve quite a few activities, even though we are continuing to keep things rather simple since it’s still September.
Setting Up the Classroom: Friends and Family Theme
Lots of building took place with our translucent light color blocks. Some of our children were able to stack quite a few of the squares, too!
We had family dining using our felt food. The children loved carrying conversations while pretending to eat!
Some of the items we had on our table this week:
We used our train table for our doll houses for some family play.
Related post: The Best Blocks Activities for Toddlers and Preschoolers
We painted people figures with watercolors and created a friendship banner that hangs in our classroom.
See how it was made here: How to Create a Friendship Banner (Free Printables!)
We cut paper into simple house shapes and painted them with watercolors.
Music and Movement
We held hands, sang, and moved to the song Come and Make a Circle by Susan Salidor. This is a short and sweet song about friendship, plus it reinforced our shape of the month, the circle.
Related post: 25+ Music and Movement Activities
Some of the books we read this week:
We drew on house-shaped paper. Some of the children were able to draw the members of their families, too!
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Science and Exploration:
We continued to explore the shape of the month, the circle. I placed some foam circles inside gallon freezer bags, added some dish soap, and then sealed and taped the bags to trays. The children then pressed on top of the bags to move the circles around.
We had fun washing babies in warm water with wash clothes and sponges.
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More ideas for the friends theme:
More toddler and preschool themes: