Identify and compare ways of establishing relationships and managing changing relationships.
Identify the effects of changing situations, roles, and responsibilities on relationships and appropriate responses to cope with these.
I am able to:
Understand the changing nature of relationships with my family through time, and the importance of these relationships.
Acknowledge the importance of friends and friendships.
Build relationships with other people to assist in my overall feelings of self-worth and general well-being.
Communicate by controlling many things at once, which is a skill I need to be an effective communicator.
Understand that relationships change as I get older.
Develop a personal code of integrity to guide me in my relationships in the future.
Relationships Human beings are social beings. We cluster together in cities rather than spreading ourselves across the land. We constantly interact with others in various ways and at many different levels as we share our diverse skills for the good of all. In the process of living in our society, we enter into a wide range of relationships. Those who value and build strong, positive relationships add to those people and in turn are added to in many ways. Our relationships build and evolve over time, starting within our family and gradually moving out into the wider world. Our first relationships once we are born, are with our parents. They see to our needs in terms of food, shelter, hygiene, clothing and of course love. In turn, we as babies feed back to them perhaps by gurgling and smiling, filling their lives with joy, or maybe by crying and struggling, creating stress and a sense of failure in our parents. Gradually our relationships broaden to include other family members; our brothers and sisters, grandparents, cousins and so on, who are regular contributors to our lives. From them we receive education, companionship and other treasures. Our effectiveness in encouraging their interactions with us, will influence how often and how positively they do so. The more they enjoy their interactions with us, the more often they will want to spend time with us. As we grow older again, we may begin to attend playgroups and preschool groups of various sorts. In these situations, most of us begin to develop our first relationships with friends. At first they are often rocky. We have to learn to share and communicate our wishes and feelings to people who have not lived closely with us. Gradually, however, we get better at thinking of the other person in our relationships. Then they become smoother, though even at our age, there is still plenty to learn and things don’t always run smoothly. Building positive relationships is a real skill requiring good communication and care for others. That includes feeling responsible for the outcomes created by your actions. Increasingly we can meet our own needs for food, shelter, hygiene and clothing but we still need other people for our important special relationships. Gradually, we move from liking people especially well, to the formation of special close relationships and even love for someone beyond our family. When such relationships last, they are often the starting point for new families to form. But like other relationships, they too must be worked on. Good communication and taking responsibility remain important foundations to build on.
Family relationships are very important throughout life. Using a Round Robin, with the sheet of paper provided for you, briefly explain some of the important benefits of having a good family relationship at the following points in your life:
Your first 3 years of life
When you have a young family of your own
In your old age
Rule 1: 1 person read all responses to group
Rule 2: Add more responses to the new sheet,
but DO NOT repeat anything.
Explain what you think, are the 3 most important things you can immediately do to further build and retain good relationships with your family now and throughout life.
DISCUSSION Students’ responses. Note that families meet our physical needs from birth but gradually these are met by ourselves and others in later life. However, our mental, social and spiritual needs will always be met to some degree by our families if we keep good relationships with them. “Blood is thicker than water!” What do you think family relationships were like for people in the past, especially the early settlers? (Use a Venn diagram to compare)
Relationships with Friends GAME Form a doughnut. Face one another and in pairs study each other for 1 minute. Now turn and face away for 30 seconds. Each person must change two things about their appearance. Face one another again. Try to spot the changes. DISCUSSION Showing a real interest in another person is one of the best ways of showing real friendship. For 1 minute discuss with your partner how you can show a real interest in your friend. With whom and how do you think the early settlers made friends? Would it have been easy? Why/why not? DEMONSTRATION Catch the ball. DISCUSSION How did you feel when excluded? Included? From this, we can see that we all need to feel included, and that excluding others can be very hurtful to them. Give me some examples of when you have been excluded and how you felt. What other things can you name that are very important to forming good friendships?
List the qualities you think are important to be a good friend?
Which of these qualities do you consistently provide to your friends?
Which of these qualities do your friends consistently provide to you.
How important is it that friends have a lot in common? Explain
How can you make new friends?
Where are some good places to make new friends?
Name 5 activities that are fun to do with friends.
DISCUSSION Look at your answers for Q4-7. How does peer pressure impact on friendships (negative and positive)? Friendships are a major source of our social well-being so we need to ensure that we are good at making and supporting our friendships. As friends, we must make wise choices and we shouldn’t require our friends to make bad choices either.
Take a ball of string. Hold one end. Throw the ball to another person and state a relationship you have with that person. That person repeats the process and so on. Try not to pass the ball to anyone else already on-line until all the people are holding the string. Allow the odd double-up if this is not possible.
List people other than your family and friends with whom you have a relationship (e.g. sports coach)
Order the importance of these relationships to you, by numbering them.
Do you have a poor relationship with anyone? Explain why you think that is.
Explain how each of the following can contribute to the establishment and maintenance of good relationships:
- being interested in the other person
- showing respect for the other person
- using good manners to the other person
- being assertive with the other person
- caring for the other person
- seeking to meet the needs of the other
5. With whom do you think the early settlers would have had to form relationships and why?
DISCUSSION We can see from the ball of string activity that there are many different sorts of relationships, some closer and some more distant, but we all can see that a good relationship is the result of doing the things listed in Q4. What sort of needs are met by people you have relationships with, who are not your family or friends? Which of these relationships assist your overall feelings of self-worth and general well-being?
Building Positive Relationships Through Good Communication GAME Each student to take a piece of paper from the pile and work around the class to meet and form a picture. This is your group for the next game. DISCUSSION What ways did we communicate to find who our partners are? (Speaking, Tone of Voice, Body Language). Rate the 3 areas as percentages adding to 100% in terms of their importance in the way we communicate. Discuss the estimates. Research suggests that for any message the actual weighting is approximately 7% the words we say, 23% the tone of voice we use, and 70% the body language we use. GAME In your groups of 3, you have to spend 2 minutes communicating without words. How much have you told each other by the end? Ask the other two to tell each person what that person told them, to check if all 3 have the same message. DISCUSSION Do you now have an idea of how difficult it must have been for the early settlers and the Maori people to communicate. List some of the ways they may have misinterpreted each other and what the consequences might have been. When we are communicating there are many things that can be said with the same words, e.g. ‘ I’m not going to town ’. Try saying the sentence several times, each time accenting a different one of the underlined words. How does its meaning change? What other variations can you make on the sentence if you use both tone of voice and body language? POINT So the next time someone says to you, ‘It wasn’t what you said, it was the way you said it,’ you’ll know what they mean. Also, different cultures have different ways of saying things too, which you need to consider. Communicating involves controlling many things at once, and you have to become skilled at it, because good communicators are very healthy, happy and successful people.
Building Positive Relationships Through Good Communication GAME Stick a label onto another person’s forehead without them seeing what it says. Each label has a career written on it. You have to find out who you are by talking to various people. No one is allowed to ask or tell directly, but instead you have to ask interesting questions about the other person’s career and they about yours, until you can guess what you do. You have 10 minutes for this. Then you will sit down and tell me what you do before taking off your label. ASSERTIVENESS In relationships we are sometimes confronted by aggression, lack of respect or other situations which hurt our feelings. Part of good communication is to be assertive at such times to express your feelings without accusing or otherwise inciting the other person involved. If they don’t know you were hurt by their actions, they can’t act on that knowledge. All you have to do is clearly state using the word ‘I’, how you feel and why. That leaves it over to the other person to act or not. It’s better to express your feelings rather than bottle them up. It can also help you, the speaker, feel more empowered. e.g. I feel angry when you call me that name, so I want you to stop. Use the next 10 minutes to practice making ‘I’ statements to each other. Some students can share their statements with the class at the end of the session.
Lifelong Evolution of Relationships DISCUSSION Look at the diagram and note the gradual change in the relationships we have. Think of people you know at each stage. How are each of the 4 needs met at each stage, as the relationship changes as we get older: -Physical well-being -Mental/Emotional well-being -Social well-being -Spiritual well-being
Lifelong Evolution of Relationships DISCUSSION In small groups think back as far as you can remember to the relationships you had with other children. Compare them with your relationships with your peers today. How have they changed as you have grown older? How do other relationships change? How have the relationships changed between Maori, NZers, and immigrants over they years? Have they got better or worse? Why do you think that? Relationships are so often damaged because people lash out and say or do things without thinking of the consequences. They may regret them later, but the damage is done. This is why we need personal integrity, based on clear personal principles to guide us as we meet the various changes that come as we grow and mature.
What sort of person do you want to be when you’ve grown up?
What sort of work will you do?
What sort of people will you mix with?
What about friendships? Who will your friends be?
What will they bring you?
You bring them?
Will you travel? Who with?
Why will they want to?
Will you have a house? Who will share it with you? What will you be to them?
What will they bring to you?
You bring them?
What words will describe your closest relationship?
How will you create this lifestyle for yourself?
What skills will you need?
Best Friends Would a best friend Eat your last sweet Talk behind your back Have a party and not ask you? Mine did. Would your best friend Borrow your bike without telling you Deliberately forget your birthday Avoid you whenever possible? Mine did. Would your best friend Turn up on your bike Give you a whole packet of your favourite sweets Look you in the eye? Mine did.