Friendship and bullying lesson packs

KS1-2 and KS3-4 lesson packs to help you cover this important statutory topic. 

Friendship and bullying
We’re proud to launch this lesson pack to support our members to teach this statutory content safely and effectively.
Jenny Fox
PSHE Association Senior Subject Specialist

The foundation for all Relationships Education...

Our new KS1-2 and KS3-4 lesson packs, available exclusively to members, will help your pupils to make and maintain  respectful friendships, manage any friendship challenges that arise, and identify and safely respond to bullying incidents. 

Why teach about friendship and bullying? 

24% of pupils aged 4-18 said they had experienced bullying in the previous few weeks according to a 2022 survey of over 30,000 children and young people. This figure was even higher for pupils receiving free school meals (30%) and pupils with SEND (31%). Experiencing bullying is associated with both short- and long-term impacts on mental health, emotional wellbeing, and sense of belonging in school. And the broader impacts upon school and life outcomes — for both those targeted and those who carry out bullying behaviour — are well-documented. 

Schools' statutory duties

Schools are also required to teach about friendship and bullying under the DfE’s relationships, sex and health education (RSHE) guidance, which states that primary and secondary schools have a statutory duty to teach pupils: “about the features of positive relationships and strategies to support and improve respectful relationships, as well as identifying and finding support in relation to harmful behaviours such as bullying, discriminatory bullying and bullying in online contexts.”

Teaching about preventing and tackling bullying as part of a whole school approach will also help schools to meet important statutory safeguarding duties as outlined in the DfE’s Keeping children safe in education 2023 guidance

Lesson pack overview

At key stage 1 (three lessons), pupils learn about making friends, kindness, how to manage falling out, and what to do if they witness unkind behaviour.

At key stage 2, pupils learn about: the value of friendships, overcoming challenges and how to respond to bullying behaviour in Year 3/4 (three lessons). And about: including others, communicating respectfully, the impact of bullying and how to seek support, in Year 5/6 (three lessons).

At key stage 3 (four lessons), pupils learn how to maintain positive friendships, develop empathy, and prevent or challenge bullying. They also explore friendship challenges and ways to resolve them; and learn about similarities and differences between people.

At key stage 4 (two lessons), pupils learn: how to recognise and challenge bullying in a range of contexts; about challenging unhealthy attitudes towards bullying; and, where to seek support.

 Each lesson pack includes:

  • Lesson plans (available as both PDFs and PowerPoints)
  • Engaging pupil-facing materials
  • Teacher guidance on how to teach these topics safely and effectively


Friendship & bullying KS1-2 lesson pack

Friendship & bullying KS3-4 lesson pack

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This page content is for members only

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