Making Friends is an Art Lesson Plan

Instructor: Heather Jenkins

Heather has a bachelor's degree in elementary education and a master's degree in special education. She was a public school teacher and administrator for 11 years.

This lesson introduces students to the story 'Making Friends is an Art.' Students will connect the characters in the story to people they know and role play as one of the colored pencils to show how good friends respond to challenging situations.

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of the lesson, students will be able to:

  • describe the characters in Making Friends is an Art
  • make connections between the characters in Making Friends is an Art and people they know
  • identify and describe the characteristics of being a good friend
  • show how good friends respond to difficult situations


1-1.5 hours


  • Making Friends is an Art by Julia Cook
  • Chart paper
  • Markers
  • Colored pencils (each color listed in the book)

Curriculum Standards


Ask and answer such questions as who, what, where, when, why, and how to demonstrate understanding of key details in a text.


Describe how characters in a story respond to major events and challenges


Before Reading

  • Ask the class to identify their best friends. Discuss what makes these people their best friends. Ask students if they have ever had trouble making friends or feeling left out.
  • Hold up a brown colored pencil, and tell students that they will be reading a story about a lonely brown colored pencil who is struggling to make friends.

During Reading

  • Read the book Making Friends is an Art to the class.
  • In the book, the author introduces different colored pencils who possess characteristics of good friends. As students encounter each colored pencil, discuss what characteristics the pencil shows and how these would make the pencil a good friend. Use chart paper and markers to create a chart of the colors and characteristics for students to refer to as they read and discuss the story.
    • Pink- Good listener
    • Red- Plays with everyone
    • Orange- Likes to have fun
    • Yellow- Does what is right
    • Green- Trustworthy
    • Light green- Honest
    • Blue- Cares about others and their feelings
    • Purple- Positive and hopeful
    • Black- Makes sure everyone gets along

After Reading

  • After reading the book, write the following sentence frame on the board: '_____ is like the _____ colored pencil because _____.'
  • Have students use the sentence frame to identify people they believe symbolize the characteristics of each colored pencil and explain why. For example, students might say: 'My mom is the like the red colored pencil because she listens to me when I am upset.'
  • Discuss the following questions with the students:
    • How did the brown colored pencil's feelings change from the beginning of the book to the end of the book?
    • Brown can be made by combining other colors. What does this tell us about the characteristics the brown colored pencil could display to be a good friend?
    • Which colored pencil would you want to be friends with? Why?
    • What did the colored pencils teach us about the characteristics of a good friend?
    • Why is it important for us to be a good friend?

To unlock this lesson you must be a Member.
Create your account

Register to view this lesson

Are you a student or a teacher?

Unlock Your Education

See for yourself why 30 million people use

Become a member and start learning now.
Become a Member  Back
What teachers are saying about
Try it risk-free for 30 days

Earning College Credit

Did you know… We have over 200 college courses that prepare you to earn credit by exam that is accepted by over 1,500 colleges and universities. You can test out of the first two years of college and save thousands off your degree. Anyone can earn credit-by-exam regardless of age or education level.

To learn more, visit our Earning Credit Page

Transferring credit to the school of your choice

Not sure what college you want to attend yet? has thousands of articles about every imaginable degree, area of study and career path that can help you find the school that's right for you.

Create an account to start this course today
Try it risk-free for 30 days!
Create an account