Language of Friendship 6: Standing up to Mean-on-Purpose Behavior

Video 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!


Have you heard about this thing called, ‘bullying’? Of course you have! We hear this word all the time and, can I be honest with you? I don’t like that word because it’s confusing and sometimes Friendship Fires are referred to as bullying…but they’re not…they’re just  Friendship Fires. So, at URSTRONG, we talk about Mean-on-Purpose behavior. Have you ever had someone be mean-on-purpose to you and you didn’t know what to do? (And then you went home and thought about all the things you wished you’d said and done?) I’m going to teach you how to stand up to Mean-on-Purpose behavior like a ninja! Believe me, when you learn how to do this, you will notice that kids around you start to treat you with respect and kindness…because you teach people how to treat you!

Grown-ups, are you ready to help transform your special person into a Friendship Ninja? Bullying will become a thing of the past when kids learn how to stop Mean-on –Purpose behaviour in its tracks. And, there’s no better consequence for a child being Mean-on-Purpose than a child standing up to them!

Your Friend,

This session helps kids recognize the difference between normal conflict (we call Friendship Fires®) and Mean-on-Purpose behavior. The word “bullying” is so often misused, confusing for kids, and leads them to label other children as “bullies.” Instead, our program focuses on addressing behavior that is intentionally mean (we call Mean-on-Purpose) using a Quick Comeback. This short statement, said in a strong voice (not aggressive!), lets the other person know their Mean-on-Purpose behavior is not okay. Children are then taught to walk away and report the situation to an adult. 

Research shows that consistently providing a negative consequence to this kind of behavior reduces the likelihood that it will happen again and does not allow the child to get away with treating someone poorly. ALL kids want to be liked and want to get along with one another. When they stand up to Mean-on-Purpose behavior, they guide everyone towards kindness and create a safe, caring environment that makes kids accountable.

Key Outcome

Your child will learn to stand up to Mean-on-Purpose behavior by using a Quick Comeback.

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