LifeSkills Handbooks Activity 8

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

LifeSkills Handbook Activity 8
Friendship: What is a Friend?

Purpose of activity: To explore what it means to be a friend and to think about what we expect from a friend.

Life skills: Self-awareness, Critical thinking

Important points
People have different views on what makes a friend. Disagreeing and fighting can happen even between friends. Friends can have a good and bad influence. Friends should not ask too much of each other. If the group did the self-awareness activity 1: special me, refer to this activity.


  • Three sets of friendship cards
    Click to see full size/print.


  • Divide the group into three. Give each group a set of friendship cards. Show the children each card and read what it says. Ask each group to do the same. Make sure the children understand what each image means.
  • Ask the children to discuss each card in their groups and write a tick on the back of each card that most of them agree with. Say that there are no right or wrong answers and that they should have reasons for their answers.
  • After 10/15 minutes of discussion ask one child from each group to read out a card and say whether the group agrees or disagrees, and to explain why. If other groups disagree, they can explain why. Make an ‘agree’ and a ‘disagree’ pile of cards until all the cards are finished. You can also do this discussion by showing and reading the cards to all pairs or groups. The pairs of groups discuss whether they agree or disagree and then report their answer. The important part of this activity is a good discussion.
  • Ask the children to think about two other ways to describe a friend and write and/or draw these in the two remaining cards. For example:
    • A friend is someone who knows what to do when I am sad
    • A friend shares her things with me
  • Ask each group to share their new ideas.

Final Discussion:

How can friends make a difference to you? Can you be friends with anyone? What things make it difficult to be friends with someone? What things make it difficult to be friends with you? What did you learn about having friends from this study?


Refer to this session when everyday things happen, when friends have an argument or do something considerate.

Learn more about the LifeSkills Handbook!