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Friendship: What Makes a Good Friend?

Context for this Lesson

Teaching Strategies: 

TOPIC: Character Education/ Social Skills

  • Friendship
  • What makes a good friend?
  • How do friends resolve problems?

Today we are going to talk about what makes a good friend.  Draw an outline of a friend on the paper.  This is a picture of a good friend. What are some things that a good friend says and does? On the outside area of the drawn figure you will write all of the words/phrases the students offer. How does a good friend feel on the inside in order to be able to do these things? Now you will write these words on the inside of the drawn figure.  


We are going to show you how to create a picture of one of these things. Which would you like to do? Have the students all try this first by standing at their desks.  I'm going to count to three and by three you will freeze in the image.  One. Two. Three.  Take a moment to let the students look around.  Great. Now how could we show that with more people? Can I get four volunteers to show this?  Okay class, count to three, and then we will make a frozen picture of this…
Now all of you will try it out in groups. Make groups of 3/4. First, decide what good friend thing you will do, then create a situation and make into a picture. [Coach groups as they do this].
Let’s look at the pictures you created. Wow.  What’s going on here? How are they standing? How do they look? What could be happening? What does this say about friendship? (Reminder: if you’re in a frozen picture, don’t talk, let us look at your picture first…)
All of you know so much about being good friends. I know a girl who’s having some big problems with a friend of hers. Do you think that you could help her? When I put on this scarf, I’m going to be Frances…
TIR as Frances: HI! Your teacher told me that you know a lot about being friends. I’m having a big, big problem with my friend! It started on Saturday. And look! She just wrote me this note! {I HATE YOU --Tabitha} She used to be my best friend! She sits next to me in school and now I don’t want to sit next to her any more! I don’t even want to look at her! What should I do!?
Students will ask what happened. Explain that you broke her toy… The students might as if you said you were sorry? I did, but she just ignored me! (Expand the story and respond to students’ questions.)
TEACHER OUT OF ROLE: Time out! This is a rough situation! Maybe we could talk to Tabitha and hear her side of the story?
TIR as TABITHA: Were you just talking to Frances? She’s not my friend anymore. She broke my toy and I hate her. (Take questions as Tabitha)
TEACHER OUT OF ROLE:  What can these friends do? Do you think that Tabitha’s note was a good idea? Why might be a different note that she could write. What could she say to her friend that would help to make the situation better!? BRAINSTORM ideas.


Students can continue to talk about the ideas that might help the friends make-up.  Other ideas that you could do are:

  • Students could write their own version of the note, or a note could be written together.
  • Make predications about what happens with Frances and Tabitha in the future.