Friendship Mapping

Lesson Plan Glossary

Glossary of Terms

At URSTRONG, we believe it’s important to use kids’ language for kids’ problems. That’s why we have our very own, unique language of friendship. Here are some important terms that children, parents, and teachers learn in our program.

Friendship Fire®: Any situation between you and a friend that results in negative feelings.

Mean-on-Purpose: When someone is intentionally unkind to someone else.

Quick Comeback: A very short word or phrase that is used when someone is Mean-on-Purpose. Quick Comebacks are designed to let the other person know that you heard/saw what they did and you’re not okay with it.

Friend-o-meter: A visual tool that assesses the health of friendships, ranging from the healthy zone to the unhealthy zone.

Friend-o-cycle: The normal cycle in a friendship that brings the friendship back to the healthy zone after experiencing a Friendship Fire. The phases of the Friend-o-cycle are: Healthy Friendship – Fire – Confront the issue – Talk-it-Out – Forgive & Forget – Closer & Stronger – Healthy Friendship…

4 Friendship Facts: A set of four facts that help us have realistic expectations in our friendships so we understand what is normal.

  1. No friendship (relationship) is perfect.
  2. Every friendship is different.
  3. Trust & Respect are the two most important qualities of a friendship.
  4. Friendships change…and that’s okay.

Red Shirt Girl and Striped Shirt Boy: Two characters that remind us about the importance of body language.

Friendship Ninja: A Friendship Ninja is someone who surrounds themselves with friends in the healthy zone of the Friend-o-meter. A Friendship Ninja is kind and friendly to everyone. A Friendship Ninja understands the 4 Friendship Facts and puts out their Friendship Fires when they ignite. A Friendship Ninja stands up for themselves and their friends. A Friendship Ninja makes new friends and understands that friendships change…and that’s okay. Above all else, a Friendship Ninja is someone you want to be friends with because they’re true to who they are!

Like a mind map, get your students using loads of color as they map out & reflect on their network of friends!

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Did you ever notice how different and unique each friendship in your life is?! You might have a friend you love to play sports with, a friend who brings out the goofy side of you, or a friend you totally gel with on school projects. As Friendship Fact #2 teaches us, Every friendship is different”.

It can be really interesting to create a visual map of our friendship network, so that we can see the variety of different people that we are connected to. Doing this can also help us to reflect on the health of our friendshipsThink about all of your friends. If you were to map out all your friendships, who would be part of your Friendship Map? Who would be closest to you? Which friends might be further away, but still part of your life?

This lesson is designed to help students to reflect on their current network of friends, thinking about their friendships a little more objectively.

Key Outcome

Your students will identify various types of friendships, recognizing that every friendship is different.


  • Blank paper for each student
  • Colorful markers
  • Friend-o-meter


  1. Say to your students, “Remember how every friendship is different? We are going to create visual maps (like mind maps) that capture all our different friendships!”
  2. Ask students to list all the different types of friends they have in their lives. (e.g. school friends, family friends, extra-curricular activity friends, parent’s friend’s kids, online friends, etc.)
  3. Get your students to place their own name in a circle in the centre of a piece of paper. Then, branching out from their own name, create a friendship map using colours, symbols, space and scale to represent each individual friendship and how it fits in their friendship world. You may want to show them this example:

Once they’ve completed, review the Friend-o-meter with your students. Ask them, “How would each of those friendships in your life rate on the Friend-o-meter?” Help them make the connection that healthy friendships (in the green zone on the Friend-o-meter) should be the friendships closest to their name on the friendship map. Remind them to keep unhealthy friendships at a distance.

Next Steps

Introduce the students to the UK’s Campaign to End Loneliness and show them a video.  Ask them, “What do you think a Friendship Map looks like for someone who feels lonely?” Share some stats on loneliness and ask the students to discuss ways to end this epidemic.