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What makes a friend?

To help children think about what makes a good friend (Seal theme 6: Relationships).

by The Revd Sophie Jelley

Suitable for Whole School (Pri)


To help children think about what makes a good friend (Seal theme 6: Relationships).

Preparation and materials

  • A clip from Toy Story 3 The Movie (DVD or YouTube, see section 2) or, if you don’t have the technology, print out some pictures (sometimes retailers will let you borrow display posters).

  • Bible; Jesus’ words are from John 15.12–14.


  1. Talk about an experience you have had with friends – for instance, meeting up with a friend when you were very busy but felt so much better afterwards.

    Ask: What makes someone a good friend?
  2. Show a clip from the movie, Toy Story 3 – either the final scene or the YouTube clip called, ‘You got a friend in me’.

    Explain that the Toy Story films are all about friendship. In the end, the most special friendship of all is between the boy Andy and his toy cowboy Woody. That’s because Woody is everything a really good friend should be.

    Andy says: Woody’s been my pal for ever – he’s brave and true and loyal. He’ll always be there for you and will never let you down. (You may need to explain that ‘pal’ is an American word for friend.)
  3. In the Bible we read that Jesus (Christians believe he’s the Son of God) says, ‘Love one another as I have loved you. No one has greater love than this, to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. You are my friends if you do what I command you.’

    Christians believe that Jesus promises the kind of friendship we have been thinking about (never lets us down, always there for us) to all people, including each one of us.

Time for reflection

Place your hand in your lap with your fingers stretched out wide. Spend a moment imagining that each one of your fingers represents one of your friends (school or home or farther away, it doesn’t matter).

Now take your other hand and place it over the ‘friends’ hand and spend a moment thinking about being the best friend you can be to each one of them.


Lord Jesus, thank you that you show us what true friendship means.
Help us to be friends who treat others as we want them to treat us,
who don’t let others down
and who are always there for others, no matter what happens.


‘Listen to the song from Toy Story – ‘You got a friend in me’, by Randy Newman (available to download).

Publication date: October 2011   (Vol.13 No.10)    Published by SPCK, London, UK.
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