It blew me away when I had juniors and seniors in high school referring to the end of the week as "Friendship Friday" or having the toughest looking student begging to be spotlighted on "Friendship Friday." Some of my most favorite moments from teaching have come from this activity and you can recreate these moments in any classroom!
"Friendship Friday" is my opportunity to build classroom community and to strengthen classroom management. I also created this handout to build interview skills for students to be able to talk about themselves and to leave a memorable impression. At the end of the week I choose a student to be spotlighted. You can chose your student the day before, or the day of if you are busy. You can also chose your student as an incentive or reward for the week. I assign the Friendship Friday handout to the student for them to look over the questions and to think through what they are going to say. At the beginning of class I call the student to the front of the class and I ask them the Friendship Friday questions and they get to introduce themselves to the class in the process. I also allow time for the students to show their talents! I've had original raping, dancing, singing, paintings, etc. I then ask the students to write something nice about the student on the "Friendship Friday Kind Notes" (attached to this handout) and I then read the notes to the students. I allow the spotlighted student to keep the nice notes forever. I use this time to spotlight the student and to make them feel welcomed in our classroom. The kind notes also make the students feel comfortable and confident in our classroom. You can make this activity as long or short as you want, but I promise you that if you spotlight students it will make your management much easier because your students are engaged in your classroom.