There are lots of things that make a friendship work: caring, dependability, and trustworthiness are just a few. But most of these qualities fall under the banner of empathy. Empathy is the cornerstone of any effective friendship – without it, there can only be selfishness. But young children need help developing their sense of empathy if they’re going to have healthy friendships in the future. Kids learn empathy from parents and siblings, so while your child is at the toddler stage it’s a good idea to talk frequently about feelings. If your child does something that disregards someone else’s feelings, try saying something like, “How do you think it made your brother feel when you pushed him in the sandbox?” The more your child thinks about others’ feelings, the likelier they are to develop a finely honed sense of empathy.