Associate not with evil friends, associate not with mean men;
associate with good friends, associate with noble men.
And the Lord make you to increase and abound in love one toward
another, and toward all men, even as we do toward you
1 Thessalonians 3:12
Therefore, as God's chosen people, holy and dearly loved,
clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility,
gentleness and patience.
Blessed is he who mingleth with all men in a spirit of utmost
kindliness and love.
Discuss: What friendliness means. Examples of how the children see friendliness practiced in their daily lives. How friendliness is
practiced in your class. What various situations would look like without friendliness. Why friendliness is important.
Books that reinforce the theme of friendliness
(Books can be previewed @ http://www.amazon.com)
If you don't want to purchase books, consider requesting them at your local library.
You Can Be a Friend By: Tony Dungy and Lauren Dungy
A Rainbow of Friends By: P.K. Hallinan
That's What Friends Are For By: Valeri Gorbachev
Hello World! Greetings in 42 Languages Around the Globe By: Manya Stojic
One Smile By: Cindy McKinley
Tarra & Bella: The Elephant and Dog Who Became Best Friends By: Carol Buckley
Activities to support theme of Friendliness
Remember to plan enough time for the children to help clean up after each of their activities. It's another opportunity for them
to put into practice the virtues they're learning.
- Talk Show Role Play
Put the children in pairs and have them interview each other by asking each other questions that they are interested in. Give them some
examples to get them started so they know what kind of questions to ask (Tell me about your family. What are some of your favorite things to
do? What's your favorite food? Do you have any pets? Do you know what you might want to do when you grow up? Etc.) After the pairs have
gotten to know a little bit about each other, regroup them like you're at a talk show with an audience and two chairs on the set/stage.
Let the group consult and decide on a name for their show. Have the pairs take turns going on stage and interviewing each other in front of
the audience by asking the questions they found most interesting about each other. The audience can clap after each interview to show
encouragement. You might also ask the audience if they have any questions for the pairs onstage after each interview. If your class likes to
be silly, you might even give them a few silly household items and encourage them to make up very short commercials for the items during the
'commercial breaks' when the pairs switch.
With games like this I give kids permission to pass if they are not comfortable participating. Participation should be fun and not
stressful. I explain the activity ahead of time and if any one doesn't want to participate by being on the pretend stage that's fine
and I let them know I really appreciate them participating as an audience member.
- Getting to Know My Friends
Each child in the circle takes a turn to say "I'm (their name) and I like." Instead of saying what it is they like they mime
something instead. For example, if they like playing miniature golf they could stand up and swing the imaginary golf club. The others in
circle try to guess what it is they like.
- 15 Seconds Game
The kids sit in a circle. Ask various questions and using a timer have the kids take turns to say as much as they can in response to the
question in 15 seconds. It's a great way for the kids to get to know each other better. Sample questions might be: What are your favorite
foods? What are some of the most fun things you've ever done? What are your favorite animals? If you could be any animal what would you
be and why? What's your favorite holiday and what do you like about it?
With games like this I always give kids permission to simply say pass if they are not comfortable participating. Participation should be
fun and not stressful.
- I Never Forget a Face!
Matching game by EEBOO
Arts and crafts Ideas
- Friendship Bracelets to share
Have the kids make friendship bracelets for each other. Older kids can make the more complicated versions and younger kids can do a
simple braid or even just twist a lot of the embroidery flosses together. We repurposed some old t-shirts by ripping them into long thin
strands and braiding three different colors together. This works with t-shirt material because cotton knit won't fray.
- Friendliness Handshake Poster
Have the kids trace their right hand onto several pieces of construction or decorative paper. It works best if each child uses a
different color of paper. Have the kids write their name on their paper hands and then cut them out. If there's time they can decorate
their hands. Then they trade hands with somebody else. You might even suggest they actually shake hands with each other when they trade
hands. They need to trade half of their hands with their classmates. Once they have all traded half of their hands they sit down and form
handshakes using one of their own hands and one of the other hands. The handshakes can be glued onto individual mats or arranged together as
- Welcome Friends to Your Home Poster
Cut out a construction paper house that has a door cut so that it opens and closes. Underneath the door paste the quote: "Blessed is he
who mingleth with all men in a spirit of utmost kindliness and love."
Quotes from other religions that this project works well with:
Matthew 10:12 - "As you enter the home, give it your greeting"
- Cookie Invite
Kids can decorate cookie cards to invite their friends to the next class. This is a wonderful activity to do when starting a new class
if you are hoping to have more kids join. Before class, make sugar cookies and frost with a simple glaze made of powdered sugar, a few drops
of vanilla extract, and just enough water to make it easy to spread. It's best to plan ahead and frost the cookies at least one day
before to ensure the frosting has enough time to harden completely before class. During class, the kids can decorate the cookies with Food
Writers Edible Decorating Markers. Food Writers work just like regular markers and are available in many grocery stores, craft stores, or
- Rainbow of Friends Sidewalk Art
If you have access to a large sidewalk area the kids can trace each other with sidewalk chalk. Once the outlines are made they can be
"I Think You're Wonderful" By: Red Grammar
Remember to plan for hand washing or provide antibacterial wet wipes.
- Friends Cookie Exchange
Before class, make sugar cookies gingerbread kids and frost with a simple glaze made of powdered sugar, a few drops of vanilla extract,
and just enough water to make it easy to spread. It's best to plan ahead and frost the cookies at least one day before to ensure the
frosting has enough time to harden completely before class. During class, the kids can decorate the cookies for eachother with Food Writers
Edible Decorating Markers. Food Writers work just like regular markers and are available in many grocery stores, craft stores, or online.
- Rainbow of Friends Pancakes
To go along with the A Rainbow of Friends story make a big batch of pancakes. After you've made the batter, divide it into several
bowls and add different colored food coloring to each bowl. After you've made the pancakes, the kids can use a small gingerbread man
cookie cutter to cut out the middle of each pancake. They can take the center out and trade with someone who has a different color pancake.
Serve with butter and syrup or whipped cream and fresh fruit.
Service Project Idea
As a way of meeting new friends have the kids set up a free Lemonade Stand. Consider using someone's front yard to set up the stand.
(Ask the children customers if they need to get permission from their parents before accepting the free lemonade.) Get permission from all
the parents/guardians before the children in your class participate in any service projects. Have parents accompany the class to provide
adequate adult supervision.