Activities for Parents
Our Family Talk Guides are designed to help parents and other family members talk with young children in their care about important social and emotional behaviors.
Each of the topics below comes with a simple, printable guide with step-by-step instructions for discussion activities. These are a free resource and you are welcome to share them with others.
Teachers using the Leaps system in their classrooms are also encouraged to provide these guides to parents as a supplement to the work they are doing with students during the school day.
Our goal is to help our kids get along with their whole class, not just the good friends they really like to talk to a school. We’ll also make sure they understand how to work more than they talk if they sit next to friends and how to use only nice words and actions with everyone in their class.
Just before you start making dinner one night, have your kids stop what they’re doing and come help you in the kitchen. Have all of the ingredients set out on the counter and ask them if they think you can just throw them all in a pot and stir (boxes, uncut veggies and all). Give a good laugh and tell them that most things in life come with instructions, from meals to homework…and if you are not patient with all the directions, dinner will be gross! Have your kids watch you make dinner while you talk about all the steps you’re doing. It’ll be good practice and great time together.
Find your child when they are playing with a favorite toy. Ask if you can have it to play with forever without giving back. Your child will most likely say “No” to you. When they do, wave your hands in the air and fall to your knees pretending to cry, showing your own fake temper-tantrum. Now that you have their attention, talk through how we need to stop the tantrums and handle eharing someone tell us “No” in the right ways.
Your child has been told to respect their teacher and you tell them that they need to respect you all the time. Does your child know what that means?
FOCUS: Our kids always need something from us as their parents. Sometimes it’s help learning something or sometimes it’s helping them grab something that is on a shelf out of their reach. The next time your child asks for anything, really pay attention to whether or not they used manners. Did they say “Please”, or “Thank You”? If so, thank them for using manners and acting politely. If not, use this as a chance to correct them. Either way, you have their attention so it’s time to sit down and talk about why using manner is so important.
People don’t tattle to the police; they call for help when they’re in great need. You can actually get in big trouble for making a fake or unimportant call to 9-1-1.
Let’s help our kids be respectful to their teachers. Our teachers work hard to help our kids learn. The least we can do as parents is be on their side and guide our kids at home to listen, speak respectfully, and stay appropriate in the classroom.
We’re trying to help our kids understand the ways a friend should treat them. Let’s let our kids know that to be a good friend, sometimes they will have to say “No” to friends to keep from breaking the rules and getting into trouble.
Just ASK your kids:
-“Do you know what a bully is?”
-“Do you know of any bullies at school?”
-“Do you think that bullies are good friends to others?”
Ask about the best parts of the day first, then ask if anyone got in trouble during class. Hopefully your child wasn’t the one who got in trouble, but if they were, stay calm and talk it out for now. Talk about how trouble can mean several different things.