We suggest warming up to this with our Sparklers trust activities, including Up and down and Compliment tag. It may also be useful to have completed our Discover your strengths activity.
Explain that you’re going to talk about friendships. While we all think we know what friendship means and who our friends are, it’s worth exploring a bit further. This is an opportunity to think about our friendships, and who we are as a friend.
Let students know that friends don’t have to be classmates, they may be cool adults – parents, aunties, grandparents, cousins, or people in your outer school circle – in your sports team, church, neighbours who don’t go to this school, cousins etc.
You might also advise tamariki not to mention names during this activity. Give an example of the complexities - imagine you name someone as your best friend and that person names someone different. Also, some of us find talking about friendships easy, while others don’t. Naming (or not naming) people in this activity may be hurtful, even unintentionally, so it’s best avoided.
Ask the students the following questions and write their responses up:
- What sorts of things makes a good friend?
- What do the people who care about us do?
- How do we know they’ve ‘got our back’?
- What don’t they do?
But the thing friends do, is make us feel good. Friends look out for us, they are safe. They’ve got your back.
It can help when we have problems to think about our friends and whānau as a ‘circle of friends’ or ‘constellation of friends’, or ‘gathering your team’.