Welcome to The Program


The More Fun with Sisters and Brothers Program was developed by Dr. Laurie Kramer and her students who have spent more than 30 years researching what it takes to develop successful sibling relationships. The MFWSB Program has not only helped to identify the key factors that underlie good sibling relationships, but also how to best help children develop these capabilities. Through four online lessons, you will learn how to teach your children a set of basic social and emotional skills including:

  • how to initiate social interaction and play with a sibling
  • how to appropriately accept and decline an invitation to play
  • perspective-taking
  • avoiding bossiness
  • identifying feelings and expanding one’s emotional vocabulary
  • regulating intense emotions
  • problem solving and managing conflicts

These competencies have been identified in previous research as important for promoting positive interactions between siblings.

As you learn about how each of these social and emotional competencies plays a role in helping siblings get along through the four lessons, you will have access to a variety of activities and exercises that will help you teach your children to put these competencies into action. As you progress through each of the four lessons, you will be able to access activity books, bedtime stories, and games that you can use with your children to make learning about positive sibling relationships fun.

How the program works

Before beginning the first lesson, we will ask you to answer some questions about you and your family. Once you complete this survey, you will receive a code to unlock Lesson 1.

After each lesson, you will be asked to complete a very short Progress Report so that we can learn about your experiences with the program. As you complete each Progress report, you will receive a code to unlock the next lesson.

You can complete as many lessons as you’d like each week. You don’t need to complete a lesson in a single sitting- you can come back to it as you like. We ask that you try to complete one lesson per week.

If you encounter any problems or have questions, please contact us via email at funwithsistersandbrothers@lists.illinois.edu or by visiting http://funwithsistersandbrothers.org/contact/.

For your convenience, the text of all parts of the lessons has been audio recorded. If you wish to listen, please be sure the sound on your device is on and press play. It may take a few seconds for the audio track to load.

*The above graphic is just an example of what you will see as you progress through each lesson.

Please review the Consent Form for this project which explains what you will experience as you participate in the More Fun with Sisters and Brothers Program. Please contact us if you have any questions.


Before You Get Started

We need to learn more about you and your family so that we’ll be able to tell whether, and in what ways, your children’s relationship has improved through the program. Please click here to get started. Your responses will be saved and so you may come back to the questionnaires as you like. You will need to complete the questionnaires before access to Lesson 1 will be granted.

It’s Fun to Play with Siblings

Teaching children about the value and importance of their sisters and brothers across the life course can enrich their relationship. Encouraging them to spend their time together in fun activities can support their bond. Because it’s not realistic to expect sisters and brothers to always want to play together, in this lesson parents also develop strategies for helping children to learn ways to turn down invitations to play in ways that avoid bad feelings and conflict.


Parents develop strategies for helping children learn to think about their sister or brother’s thoughts, feelings, and goals in addition to their own. The More Fun with Sisters and Brothers Program draws heavily on the idea that conflict and bossiness can be minimized if children appreciate the perspectives of others.

Identifying Feelings and Emotion Regulation

Parents develop strategies for helping children to identify feelings in themselves as well as in others and to expand their vocabulary about emotions so that they can better communicate with one another about their experiences. Because dealing with siblings can often be frustrating, parents are taught methods for helping children to manage intense emotions.

Conflict Management and Problem Solving

When conflicts are considered problems, and not catastrophes, they become more manageable. Drawing upon all of the skills taught in Lessons 1, 2 and 3, parents develop strategies for helping children manage disagreements without anger and distress using clear communication, perspective-taking, emotion regulation, brainstorming and problem solving.