Practicing listening and speaking skills can help early learners develop the necessary skills to build friendships.
Modeling a conversation with a fellow adult can be a good way for children to develop these skills. Divide the group into two. Tell the students that they are going to have conversations with each other to practice being good listeners. But first, they will watch a conversation. Tell them to pay close attention to what the "Listener" does.
Have a conversation with another teacher or adult about what they did yesterday. The "listener" will ask questions such as: "what else did you do?" "What did you eat?" etc. Discuss with the children what a good listener does including: good eye contact, nodding or smiling, asking questions, waiting until the speaker is finished.
Assign the role of "listener" and "speaker" to pairs of students. Have them practice the conversation together.
Being a good friend means listening to your friends. It is important for young children to develop listening and speaking skills in order for them to build friendships, to understand those around them and to express themselves to others.
Play tin can telephone with your group. Invite the class to sit in a circle. Whisper a word such as "listen" in the ear of a student. Have that student whisper it in the ear of the next child and so on. See how far the message can travel correctly. Use positive reinforcement to motivate your students to listen closely. Cheer them on when they finish with the correct sentence and congratulate them for being good listeners!
Play a "Thomas Says" (Simon Says) game with your group. Select one student to play the role of "Thomas" and ask the rest of the class to stand facing Thomas. The game begins when Thomas tells the lass to do something such as, "Thomas says clap your hands." If Thomas says, "Thomas Says" before the task, the players must perform the task (in this case, they must clap their hands). If Thomas only says "Do this" the players are supposed to stand still. The players who take the action are out. The last person still in the game becomes the new Thomas.