LifeSkills Handbooks Activity 60

This is a single activity session plan from The Lifeskills Handbook. There are 61 activity sessions in this book and this is Activity 60. The book is available from our resources section where you’ll also find downloadable storybooks, booklets and posters to help you in your work.

LifeSkills Handbooks Activity 60 – My New Network

Purpose of Activity: To look at our personal support structures.

Life Skills: Self-awareness, Interpersonal Relationships

Important Points
Make sure you have done Activity 6: What is my network of relationships? before trying this activity.


  • Outline picture of a ship for the whole group with the name ‘relation-SHIP’ or as appropriate in the local language.
  • Figures on the ship waving representing
    • parents and elders
    • brothers, sisters and cousins
    • friends
    • people in authority (teachers, police, employers)
    • boy/girlfriend.
  • Marker pens or crayons in at least three colours, enough for one between two children in the group
  • Outline of a ship for each child in the group.


  1. Explain what a relationship is (refer back to Activity 6).
  2. Ask children to identify the figures as people with whom they have relationships, for example:
    • That is my Uncle
    • That is my mum holding my sister
    • That is Samson (the manager of the programme!)
    • That is Clara (the group’s life skills educator!)
  3. Give each child an outline of a ship and ask them to draw in the figures that are ‘on their own ‘relation-SHIPS’.
  4. Explain that relationships help to support us. Ask children to draw a ring of colour around the head of the people on the ship who love, support and help them. They can add more figures if they need to.
  5. Ask children to draw on the ship people who they may not know now but who might be important to them in the future, for example:
    • an employer
    • a neighbour
    • a wife/husband
  6. Ask children how they will make sure that these people will support and help them in the future, for example:
    • By being friendly
    • by showing respect
    • by being helpful
    • by doing things that you say you will do (reliable)
  7. What might stop people giving you support and help? Examples are:
    • a problem they have which is nothing to do with you
    • a problem they have which has something to do with you.

You can have a break here.

  1. Ask the children to practice roleplays of their first meeting with a new employer. This employer may be a shopkeeper, a market stall holder, a tradesman or some other employer. Make it appropriate to children in the group.
  2. Children present the roleplays and discuss:
    • Was it a good meeting? Why or why not?
    • What kind of problems might there be in the future?
    • What can be done to sort out any problems early on?
    • What makes this meeting easy? Difficult?
    • Other questions.

Follow-up Activity

Children might find it difficult to trust and speak to some adults. Additional roleplay can help them to practice. The group can examine what was good about the communication and what needed to be improved. Some children may need individual support or counselling.

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