Supporting Peer Relationships

As adults, we can help infants and toddlers make connections and enjoy each other’s company

Two boys drawing together

What You Need to Know

Infants and toddlers love to connect with others. As they develop, young children may begin to show interest in their peers and want to play with other children. Supporting peer relationships means helping children enjoy each other’s company and reinforcing positive connections that set the foundation for developing friendships.

What It Looks Like

A quick glance at how you can support infants and toddler in peer interactions

Promote Social Skills

Help toddlers build important social skills, like this teacher does. Notice how she narrates and scaffolds children through the process of taking turns. She also applauds their efforts!

Infant and toddler playing with teacher in a small group

Foster Shared Experiences

Create opportunities for children to participate in activities with their peers. This is a great way to support the development of friendships skills.

Be Available and Supportive

Being ready to assist with peer interactions, such as taking turns, gives young toddlers the opportunity to practice their budding social skills in a safe and supportive way. 

BUILDING CONNECTIONS WITH BOOKS

Kindness Makes Us Strong

Written and illustrated by Sophie Beer, this story highlights the power of everyday acts of kindness. Kindness is a friendly hello, a roaring cheer, or a quick boost. See how you can engage our youngest readers with the power of kindness.

Kindness and Strong Book Cover

Activity Cards for Infant and Toddler Classrooms

Part of the STREAMin3 curriculum, these activity cards provide simple and fun ways you can help older infants and toddlers connect with others
relate card that says hello goodbye
greet

Hello, Goodbye!

Provide opportunities for children to greet or say goodbye to each other across the day.

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relate icon that says partner clapping
coordinate

Partner Clapping

Encourage pairs of children to sing Pat-a-Cake while clapping hands as they sit criss cross.

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partner yoga
connect

Partner Yoga

Yoga can be a fun way to connect. Challenge children to pose with a partner and work together.

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relate car that says telephone
communicate

Telephone

Practice teamwork, communication, and listening with a game of telephone.

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Get Our Resource Guide

Includes questions and activities to guide your use of the videos, book suggestions, and activity cards featured for each of our core social-emotional skills