Character Education - The Six Pillars of Character - Citizenship

Teaching Guide:

for grades K-5

This page is from the teaching guide for the video "Being Friends" in the DVD series You Can Choose!


To have good friends you must be a good friend. Here are some of the ways good friends treat each other:

 Good friends listen to each other.

Good friends don't put each other down or hurt each other's feelings.

 Good friends try to understand each other's feelings and moods.

Good friends help each other solve problems.

 Good friends give each other compliments.

Good friends can disagree without hurting each other.

Good friends are dependable.

Good friends respect each other.

Good friends are trustworthy.

 Good friends give each other room to change.

 Good friends care about each other.

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the video

Buy This Video

This video teaches children:

 About the value of having good friendships.

 What makes good friendships work.

 That it's good to be open to friendships with people who are different.

see story synopsis . . .


the series
Start your kids on the path to positive, healthful life choices. This delightful video series teaches children valuable lessons that contribute to self-discipline, good decision-making, high self-esteem, a sense of responsibility, and the ability to get along with others.  more. . .

For more information about individual videos in this series, click on the title below.
•  Cooperation
•  Being Responsible
•  Dealing with Feelings
•  Saying No
•  Doing the Right Thing
•  Disappointment
•  Appreciating Yourself
•  Asking for Help
•  Being Friends
•  Resolving Conflicts

If your school or organization does not have these videos, you can purchase them from Live Wire Media, or request them from your local library.



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If you are using the video, ask the first two questions before viewing.

1.  Suppose you were invited to a birthday party but your best friend was deliberately left out. What would you do? Why?

2.  Have you ever felt left out? What happened? Did you do anything about it?

3.  Why do you think Missie didn't get invited to Priscilla's party?

4.  How did Rhonda feel when she found out Missie wasn't invited to the party?

5.  What was Rhonda's dilemma?

6.  How do you feel about the choice Rhonda made?

7.  How do you feel about the choice Fiona made?

8.  Do best friends always have to do everything together? Do best friends always have to have the same friends?

9.  What makes you a good friend?

10.  Do you have a different best friend than you had a year ago? What happened? Did one of you change?

11.  Why are friendships so important to us?

12.  What is popularity? How important is it to you? Should friendships be based on popularity?

13.  What do you think friendships should be based on?

(If you wish to copy or use any material from this website, please click here for Terms of Use.)

To find teaching guides on other topics for this and other grade levels
click here.


1.  Write on the board, "To have good friends, you must be a good friend." Ask the children to explain that statement and to tell you why they either agree or disagree with it. Ask them to think of ways that good friends treat each other. List their answers on the board and discuss each one. Compare their list with the one on the opposite page.

2.  Have the children look for examples of friendship behaviors in magazines or make pictures of them (see our list in "How to Be a Good Friend" at the top of this column). Then have them use the pictures to create a classroom collage. They could also contribute slogans or mottos about friendships.

3.  Divide the class into groups of four or five. Each group's task is to choose one group member to play the role of a new kid in class. The new kid's challenge is to try to gain acceptance into the group. After the role-plays, discuss with the class how it felt to be the new kid and how it felt to be part of the "in-group." Discuss some of the different ways of "breaking in" to a new group.

4.  Ask the children to think about how a movie or TV show dealt with friendship. Ask what someone in the show did that made him or her a good friend or a bad friend.

5.  Brainstorm ways kids can be more tolerant and accepting of each other. Write them on the board. Then have the children work in small groups to create posters about accepting others. Display the posters in the classroom hallway.

(If you wish to copy or use any material from this website, please click here for Terms of Use.)

Other teaching guides in this series:

  •  Cooperation
•  Being Responsible
•  Dealing with Feelings
•  Saying No
•  Doing the Right Thing

•  Disappointment
•  Appreciating Yourself
•  Asking for Help
•  Being Friends
•  Resolving Conflicts


1.  Make two lists: (1) things people do when they leave others out, and (2) things people do when they invite others in or make them feel part of the group. Discuss the lists in class.

2.  Think about a time when you and a friend had terrific fun together. Write about why it was so much fun. What do you like about your friend that made it fun to be together?

3.  Write a "Friendship Recipe" telling someone else how to be a good friend. Include the "ingredients" of a friendship and the "recipe" (steps) for being a good friend or making new friends.

4.  Divide a piece of paper in half lengthwise. On one side make a list for the topic "I like a friend who...." On the other side make a list for the topic "Things I do for my friends...."

5.  Pretend that a good friend has gone away and would like to hear from you. Write your friend a letter about why you miss him or her and the good times you used to have together.

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To enlist the involvement of parents, make copies of the "For Parents" block (see below) and send them home with the children. Tell the children to discuss the video with their parents, and to perform the following activities.

1. Interview your parents, family members, or neighbors about a time when they felt left out of a group. Ask how they felt about it and how they handled the situation. Did they have someone they could talk to about it?

2. Ask family members to tell you about a time when a friendship of theirs changed or ended because their friend moved, became part of a different group, went to a new school, or some other reason. How did they feel?

3. Ask your family members to describe a time when someone they met surprised them by being different than they expected.

Note to the teacher or group leader: It might be a good idea to think of some way for the children to share the outcomes of these activities with each other. Perhaps they could give written or oral reports or discuss their experiences in small groups.

(If you wish to copy or use any material from this website, please click here for Terms of Use.)

(Copy this block and send it home to the parents.)


Dear Parent,

Your child is involved in learning-activities designed to develop good character and empower young people to make good choices for themselves. He or she may be asked to complete several tasks at home. Your cooperation with these activities will support our overall program.

The current lesson is about friendship. We have shown a video entitled "Being Friends," which presents a skit and discussion about what happens to three good friends when one of them is deliberately excluded from a party. We urge you to ask your child to tell you about this video program and what he or she learned from it.

Here are some things you can do to encourage your child to develop positive and healthy friendships.

 Encourage your child to talk with you about his or her friendships.

 If your child shows signs of feeling rejected or left out talk with him or her about it. Share a time when you felt the same way.

 Be sensitive to friendships that may involve negative activities or put-downs of other kids. Discuss it with your child and let him or her know how you feel about it.

  Encourage your child to show appreciation when a friend does something thoughtful or helpful.


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