21+ Empathy Activities for Kids that You Might Know!

Empathy is the ability of kids to understand the emotions 😊, feelings 🙂, and perspectives 💭 of others, by putting themselves in the other person’s shoes and responding with care and concern.  

Empathy contributes to the social-emotional development of kids, and it also promotes their social interactions as they understand and share the emotions and feelings of people, which helps build trust and helps kids foster and maintain strong and meaningful connections. 

I would say that empathy also enhances the overall emotional intelligence of your kids. Kids with emotional intelligence can label, identify, understand, and manage their emotions and feelings as well as the emotions and feelings that others are experiencing. 

Why is Empathy Important for Kids?

I believe that empathy is important for kids and is essential for their growth and development as empathetic individuals.

The quality of having empathy in kids helps foster an understanding of others’ feelings, develops their ability to look at things from the perspective of others, and helps them respond with an appropriate reaction to offer care and comfort.

It helps promote prosocial behavior in kids, which involves actions that help others and do good for them – sharing, comforting, cooperating, etc., and showing care and concern for their emotions and feelings.

Empathy also contributes to developing interpersonal relationships in kids with others as they understand and share the emotions and feelings of those around them leading to a level of trust and connection among them.

Role of Empathy in Holistic Development

Empathy is an essential aspect that contributes to the holistic development of kids and enhances their growth as compassionate individuals.

The quality of empathy contributes to the ability of kids to identify and understand their emotions and feelings and also identify and empathize with the emotions and feelings of others, enhances their emotional intelligence, and leads to their emotional development of kids.

It helps kids form strong connections and build trust through social interactions with those around them by understanding and responding to their emotions, feelings, perspectives, and situations, which enhances their social development of kids.

Furthermore, empathy allows kids to understand themselves better and also form an awareness of others and helps in acknowledging the emotions, feelings, thoughts, and perspectives of those around them contributing to their spiritual development of kids.

Key Aspects of Empathy and Compassion Development

The key aspects of empathy and compassion development are –

Understanding and Sharing Feelings

Understanding Feelings Empathy Activity

Understanding and sharing feelings from a young age helps foster empathy in kids as they can understand and share the emotions and feelings of another person and see things from their perspective to realize what they are going through better.

These two aspects play an essential role in developing empathy and compassion in your kids as they can identify social cues, perceive the emotions and feelings of others, and display empathy and compassion toward their situations.


Role Playing Activity for Kids

Role-play 🎭 provides your kids with countless opportunities to enact certain scenarios and real-life situations that allow them to identify emotions, understand them, learn how to deal with certain emotions, and then respond and react to them.

You can provide your kids with specific emotions and feelings for them to act out or react to give them a sense of how to empathize with the emotions and feelings that others are going through.


Storytelling Activity for Kids

Storytelling 📖 paves the way for your kids to learn more about emotions and understand them better — as they say, stories are powerful and can have an impact on them. This also makes it easier for them to understand and share their own emotions and feelings as well as those around them.

You can choose stories that are based on the theme of emotions and feelings according to the developmental age of your kids and have regular storytelling sessions with them to help them understand the concept better and in a manner that is engaging for them.

Emotional Literacy Games:

Emotional Literacy Game for Kids

Emotional literacy games 🎲 are a fun way for your kids to develop their emotional literacy, which is their ability to identify, understand, and express their emotions and also understand, listen to, and empathize with the emotions and feelings of others. 

You can let your kids play emotional literacy games to promote their emotional literacy to learn to identify, understand, and express their emotions and feelings clearly and also have a good time while doing so.


The benefits of understanding and sharing feelings for kids are –

  • Enhances emotional intelligence in kids as they are able to identify and understand their emotions as well as those of others.
  • Promotes self-awareness in kids and their ability to understand and express their emotions and feelings that they go through clearly.
  • Fosters an understanding in kids of others when it comes to the emotions, feelings, and perspectives of other people.
  • Fosters deeper and more meaningful social connections as kids empathize and listen to others’ and what they are experiencing.
  • Leads to better cooperation in kids with their peers, as they understand others’ feelings and learn appropriate responses.

Environmental Awareness and Self-Awareness

Environmental awareness encourages kids to make choices ✅ that are sustainable and that will benefit the environment rather than worsen it and help them develop empathy for the planet.

It involves kids having an awareness about the environment, how human behavior and actions have impacted it, and learning and practicing ways to save the environment and the planet in their own ways.

Having self-awareness allows kids to identify, understand, and acknowledge their emotions, feelings, and thoughts, and how they impact others. This helps them develop a good sense of understanding of who they are as individuals and enhances their empathy by trying to do the same for others and their situations. 

Nature Walks:

Nature Walk Activity for Kids

Nature walks 🌳🚶🏽‍♀️can help promote a sense of environmental awareness in your kids and let them form a connection with nature. These nature walks encourage your kids to observe, notice, appreciate, and interact with their natural surroundings. 

You can take your kids on nature walks and spend time in parks, gardens, and natural areas regularly, as it works wonders for their bodies and minds and can boost their empathy.

Recycling Projects:

Recycling Activity for Kids

Recycling projects 🧶 are so much for your kids to do with their creativity and are also a great way to promote the practice of recycling and caring for the environment while doing so by encouraging your kids to work with recyclable and used materials as a way to show empathy for the planet 🌍.

You can get your kids to try a variety of recycling projects with items like empty plastic bottles, old CDs, cereal and cardboard boxes, egg cartons, newspapers, empty paper rolls, and so on, into beautiful and functional crafts with recyclable materials.

Animal Care:

Animal Care Activity for Kids

Animal care, as the name suggests, involves caring for animals 🦮, which I believe can help kids become more compassionate and empathic as they look after and care for them. 

You can start the practice of caring for animals and their welfare at home from a young age if you have pets 🐶 that your kids can help look after for them to learn how to care for animals or animals on a farm 🐮 they can visit regularly.


The benefits of environmental awareness and self-awareness are –

  • Promotes stewardship in kids, which is the responsibility to use and care for natural resources through sustainable practices and conversation efforts.
  • Fosters respect for nature and encourages your kids to appreciate and cherish nature and her creations.
  • Cultivates a sense of responsibility and care for the environment in kids to take steps to care for the environment through their actions. 
  • Promote mindfulness in kids, which creates a sense of calm and peace in their minds and helps enhance their mood.
  • Promotes a better understanding and awareness of kids’ place in the world and this creates a sense of belonging and community.

By Stories

Story Reading Activity for Kids

Stories 📚 are an effective way to foster the quality of empathy in your kids — moral stories in particular can help your kids learn various life lessons presented in the form of a narrative and characters.

I would say that moral stories play a significant role in understanding empathy and compassion as it allows them to take away a life lesson that they can then implement in their real lives. 

These moral stories present life lessons in the story form with an emphasis on certain behaviors and their consequences and encourage them to adopt good virtues and moral values to practice in their lives.


The benefits of moral stories for kids are –

  • Foster the quality of empathy in kids with the help of well-crafted and engaging moral stories and the characters in them.
  • Help your kids learn and develop a sense of right and wrong behaviors and learn about what’s good and bad.
  • Promote a positive outlook in kids toward people and situations and the way they look at life.
  • Instill values like compassion, honesty, courage, and so on, in kids.
  • Encourage kids to take away life lessons to practice in their lives.

Strategies to Foster Empathy

I would like to share a few strategies that you can adopt to foster empathy in your kids –

Model Empathic Behavior

I believe that it is essential to model empathic behavior in your kids from a young age by being a role model and practicing the quality of empathy yourself as kids get influenced by the behaviors and actions of adults. 

You can set an example and practice empathic behavior for your kids to learn from and also follow in their lives by understanding the emotions and feelings of others and being a source of comfort in times of need despite not going through a particular situation.

Discuss Emotions Regularly

Discuss emotions regularly with your kids to foster emotional intelligence and help them identify and label their emotions better and for them to understand what they are going through.

It also contributes to building empathy in kids, as they can also identify and understand the same with others.

You can have open discussions and conversations every day with your kids to discuss their emotions and what they are feeling on that day to promote a better level of emotional understanding.

Provide Opportunities for Children to Practice Empathy

I recommend you provide your kids opportunities to practice empathy with the help of activities and play, where they can interact with others and understand them better.

You can set up and encourage your kids to engage with their peers and other kids through fun and engaging activities and social play to foster their empathy and compassion.

Empathy Activities for Kids

I would like to share a few empathy activities that you can consider for your kids to do based on their age and development stage to promote empathy and compassion from early childhood, which include –

Random Acts of Kindness 

I recommend this activity to promote kindness ❤️ and empathy in your kids.

You can encourage them to perform one random act of kindness to someone, after which you can let your kids reflect and share how they felt.

Reading Sessions

Reading Sessions for Kids

I would say that reading books 📖 is a perfect way to foster empathy, compassion, and values in your kids. You can choose storybooks that present the importance of being empathic and kind.

Animal Care

You can encourage your kids to care for animals 🐮 and look after them to foster empathy and a sense of kindness to animals. Caring for animals can start from home if you have pets that your kids can take care of.

Nature Exploration

I believe that it is essential for kids to spend more time outdoors 🌳 – in the garden or park, and go on nature walks and hikes to explore and foster a connection with nature. This lets them develop an empathy for the environment.


Gardening Activity for Kids

Gardening 👩🏽‍🌾 is one of the best ways to foster a connection with nature and makes for a fun hobby for your kids. You can encourage your kids to help with simple tasks to care for the plants.

Recycled Crafts

You can promote environmental awareness in your kids through crafts ✂️ activities made with old, recycled items.

It enhances their creativity and lets them repurpose and transform items into beautiful creations.


I recommend you encourage your kids to participate in volunteering activities at school or in the community.

They can choose to volunteer for projects that work for people, animals, and the environment.

Open Discussions

Open Conversation Activity for Kids

Open discussions 🗣️ can help your kids reflect on their emotions, feelings, and thoughts to develop self-awareness.

This also allows them to understand the emotions, feelings, and perspectives of others better.

Honest Conversations

I consider it essential to have open and honest conversations 💬 with your kids regularly about their emotions, feelings, thoughts, and perspectives.

This can help them develop a sense of self-awareness and understand the concept of empathy better.


Perspective-taking activities can encourage your kids to think from another person’s shoes. Give your kids a few sets of real-life scenarios and ask them for their perspectives and how they would feel in that situation.


I recommend encouraging your kids to maintain a journal 📔 to write down their thoughts and feelings to understand themselves better.

This also promotes self-awareness and helps in understanding the emotions and feelings of others.

Draw the Emotions

Drawing Activity for Kids

You can provide your kids with a sheet of paper with circle outlines and get them to fill a circle by drawing a face depending on the emotion they are feeling that day.

This helps them label and identify their emotions.

Label the Emotions

You can present your kids with a list of scenarios and get them to imagine themselves in that particular scenario and state their feelings.

This activity helps your kids label and identify their emotions and feelings.

Emotion Charades

Emotion charades is similar to dumb charades and requires your kids to work in pairs to act and guess the emotions and feelings based on facial expressions.

It allows them to understand the cues and body language of others better.

Emotions Wheel

Emotions Wheel Activity for Kids

You can create a simple wheel with various emotions for your kids to engage with. I would say that this allows them to identify, understand, express, and talk about emotions and feelings with the help of the wheel.

Mood Tracker

I would say that a mood tracker can help your kids identify, express, and track their emotions and feelings on an everyday basis.

This activity allows for better self-awareness in kids in terms of their emotional state of mind.

Watch Movies

Watching Movie Activity for Kids

Watching movies 🎥 and documentaries on emotions, feelings, empathy, and kindness can have an impact on your kids.

It is a visual medium that allows kids to practice empathy toward people, animals, and the planet.

Conversation Cubes

I believe that conversation cubes are a great way for your kids to talk, discuss, and understand topics like emotions, feelings, values, and so on.

A conversation cube can be made from a sheet of paper and write down certain questions and statements on each side. 

Help a Friend

Helping Friends Activity for Kids

You can encourage your kids to help others and care for them as a way to foster and maintain interpersonal connections and relationships.

This helps them form a sense of belonging with those around them.

Say Something Nice

I recommend you encourage your kids to say something nice to one of their friends and family every day to make it a habit. This simple act of kindness can go a long way in fostering compassion.


Role-playing 🎭 is a fun activity for your kids to develop empathy by enacting certain scenarios and real-life situations.

This helps them identify emotions and feelings and learn how to deal with and respond to them.

Obstacles in Fostering Empathy and Solutions

There are a few obstacles to fostering empathy in kids, which include –

  • Difficulty in recognizing others’ emotions can prove to be a hindrance in letting them show empathy and compassion to those around them and being there for them.
  • Lack of modeling empathic behavior can lead to kids becoming indifferent to the emotions and feelings of those around them.
  • Difficulty in taking others’ perspectives can reduce empathy in kids as they aren’t able to connect with a perspective other than theirs.

There are also a few solutions that can help tackle these obstacles to fostering empathy in kids, which are –

  • Emotional literacy activities can help kids become better at recognizing and understanding the emotions of those around them.
  • Modeling empathic behavior can influence kids and encourage them to practice empathy with others and care for the emotions and feelings of others.
  • Promoting perspective-taking can help kids understand things from another person’s point of view, and this also helps foster empathy.

The Role of Key Individuals

Parents, teachers, and community members are key individuals who play an important role in promoting empathy and compassion in kids.

Parents, teachers, and community members can provide opportunities to develop empathy in kids at home and in school in the form of various activities to let them practice empathy for those around them.

I would like to share a few strategies, resources, and tips that you can employ and utilize to foster empathy in kids –

  • Have open discussions and conversations with your kids about their emotions, encourage them to share their feelings, and describe and label them to get a better understanding of their emotional state.
  • Ensure that your kids understand the importance of empathy and the need to understand others and their situations.
  • Encourage your kids to label and describe their feelings clearly and precisely at any given particular moment and practice this regularly.
  • You can have open discussions and conversations with your kids about the environment and the importance of making the right choices that benefit the environment.
  • I recommend you get your kids to spend time outdoors – nature walks, strolls in the park, gardening, etc., as often as possible to let them foster a connection, appreciate, and experience the beauty of nature.
  • Encourage your kids to follow sustainable practices and make intentional choices that are better for the environment and for the planet in the long run.
  • I recommend you come up with fun recycling projects for your kids to do to bring out their creative side and make crafts out of recycled material, which is beneficial for the environment.
  • You can read books with stories based on moral values regularly with your kids to foster empathy and compassion through stories.
  • Encourage social play through playdates for kids to interact with others and learn to understand other people’s emotions and feelings.
  • Be a role model to your kids with your behaviors and actions to foster empathy and kindness and encourage them to become responsible toward nature and the environment through their thoughtful actions and care for animals.


Empathy is a quality that allows your kids to identify, understand, and share their emotions and also understand and share concern for the emotions and feelings of those around them. 

It allows them to foster and maintain better connections through the practice of empathy and compassion through building trust and offering the feeling of care, concern, and comfort. 

I hope this detailed guide 📑 on empathy for kids was informative and beneficial for you to understand the topic better to help your kids foster the quality of empathy for a better future. 😁

Empathy Activities for Kids
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