As a kid, I always looked forward to the first day of school! I would have my new supplies packed perfectly into my backpack and would choose my outfit weeks before the big day.
The most nerve-wracking part of every first day of school was finding out which of my friends would be in my class. Would my best friend be by my side? What if none of my friends were in my class? For so many kiddos, making new friends is a daunting task!
“Making Friends” is a catchy goal-oriented song that clearly details the basic steps in those very first social interactions between friends. This song is a great way to introduce the tricky and often awkward beginning stages of friendship to children who might need some guidance.
Goals for this song include:
- Improve social skills
- Improve sequencing skills
- Increase social interactions
When introducing this song, I always start by discussing the topic of making friends. I like to learn how my students think about making friends so that I’m able to adapt the song appropriately.
For children who are just beginning to show interest in peers, I will create visuals or use sign language that pairs with each step of making friends. Very often, I will challenge them to put the visuals in chronological order. Should we say hello first, or ask questions first? If sign language, singing, or verbal responses are more appropriate, I will omit keywords and encourage students to fill in the missing important word.
Once children have mastered the basic steps of “Making Friends”, the lyrics are easy to adapt to accommodate for additional friend-making steps or even musical role-playing activities. The beauty of adapting lyrics to a song students are already familiar with is that they are often able to quickly learn the new lyrics, while still maintaining the same catchy melody they are used to, so that new skills can be generalized more quickly.
Although the steps to “Making Friends” are a vital component of the song, it’s also necessary to discuss why having friends is important. That’s exactly what the second verse is all about!
Filled with simple concepts like having friends to make us laugh, the second verse reinforces all the amazing reasons to have friends. And, just like the first verse, visuals can be paired with lyrics, or lyrics can be omitted to challenge students.
“Making Friends” Is a perfect way to introduce the basics of friendship and how to navigate the tricky waters of meeting new classmates at the beginning of the school year. Tell me in the comments below: what are the biggest challenges your students face when it comes to making new friends?
You can listen to “Making Friends” in its entirety right here. Lyrics, chords, mp3, and instrumental track for this original song are available for download. As is the case for all Listen & Learn Music creations, we invite you to adapt this song as needed to best serve your students and/or clients.