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The Buddies Group

The Buddies Group is a social skills group for children ages three to five who need support in the development of social, speech, language, and play skills. By providing children with the safety of a small, familiar group setting and the support of caring educators, children learn to create trusting relationships with their peers so they can generalize their new learned abilities in other contexts, such as school settings or daily life experiences.


Building on individual children’s strengths, teachers use varying strategies and materials to help participants develop a growing confidence in their ability to share more of themselves successfully with others. Our child-led approach provides opportunities for children to work on play, communication, problem solving, and turn-taking while supporting their emotional ability to cope with the excitement and struggles of making new friends. Children develop their play and social skills which includes (but is not limited to):

  • Imaginary play
  • Multi-step play themes
  • Keeping attention on one idea
  • Problem solving skills
  • Increasing emotional awareness and emotional rich play
  • Turn taking
  • Social problem solving
  • Being a member of a community
  • Coping with emotions that arise when playing with peers
  • How to be a friend
  • How to have a conversation
  • Conflict resolution
  • Perspective taking

Who is the group appropriate for?

Buddies is for children ages 3 to 5 who need support in their social and play skills. Children who have social anxiety, emotional/behavioral challenges, social language difficulties, and attentional issues. Children should have some communication, social, and play skills that can be expanded and fostered through the group.