Teaching Tool - Healthy Relationships

This presentation teaches students learn about factors that contribute to healthy relationships.

Target audience: students in Grades 7
Length of core content presentation: 50 minutes

Criteria Met

Grade Ontario Curriculum Codes
7 Grades 1-8: Health and Physical Education (2019) D3.3


In delivering this presentation, the teacher will:

  • Create an environment in which students feel comfortable discussing the factors that shape relationships as healthy or unhealthy
  • Provide opportunities for students to think critically and practice decision-making to promote healthy relationships


By the end of this presentation, students will:

  • Identify and distinguish between qualities of healthy and unhealthy relationships
  • Demonstrate the ability to reason critically in making decisions about relationships

Core Knowledge Content

Core knowledge content provides the teacher with the background information needed to prepare and teach this health class.

Learning Activities

  • Healthy relationships (essential)
    Time: 50 minutes



    • Deliver PowerPoint presentation, using prompts in presentation notes to conduct discussion throughout presentation, if desired
    • Ask students what they think makes a relationship healthy or unhealthy. Allow the students 2-3 minutes to discuss ideas with a partner.


    • Follow prompts in PowerPoint presentation notes to incorporate supplemental activities (Snowball, Knowing the signs, and I.D.E.A.L.)
    • If desired, consult with the school health nurse to address difficult questions or to arrange a question and answer session for the class with the nurse
  • I.D.E.A.L. activity (essential)
    Time: 15 minutes



    • Cue the I.D.E.A.L. slide and introduce students to the I.D.E.A.L. method of problem solving (refer to speaker's notes in presentation and/or to Core Knowledge Content as needed)
    • Demonstrate the worksheet and explain the steps involved in the process
    • Divide the class into 5 small groups and distribute a scenario card and worksheet to each group
    • Instruct students to read and work through their scenario in their groups, using the I.D.E.A.L. method
    • After students have completed the small group activity, have each group present their scenario and their response to the whole class
      • Cue the following slide to display Scenario 1 and have a student read the scenario aloud to the class
      • Allow the group to which this scenario was assigned to share their reflections and response, following the I.D.E.A.L. method
      • Ask the rest of the class whether they agree or disagree with the rationale presented by the group. Allow for additional suggestions to be made, supplementing and clarifying ideas as needed.
      • Continue in the same manner with each of the remaining scenarios


    • Quick Review: Place scenario cards in a small box in the classroom and use them whenever time permits to quickly review the I.D.E.A.L. method and decision-making in the context of healthy relationships. This activity can be completed as a whole class or in small groups or pairs. Have students create their own scenarios to include in the box.
    • For formal assessment, present a scenario to the whole class and have each student complete an I.D.E.A.L. worksheet in response to the scenario to be collected and assessed
    • For formal assessment, have students dramatize or script a scenario and a response

    Curriculum Connections

    This activity can be connected to curriculum expectations in Language (Ontario Curriculum, Grades 1-8, Language (2006), Grade 7: Writing, 2.2) and The Arts (Ontario Curriculum, Grades 1-8, The Arts (2009), Grade 7: Drama, B1.

  • Snowball activity
    Time: 10-15 minutes


    • Paper
    • Pens/pencils


    • Have students pair up and distribute two pieces of paper to each pair
    • Ask students what they think makes a relationship healthy or unhealthy. Allow the students 2-3 minutes to discuss ideas with their partner
    • Instruct students to write one quality of a healthy relationship on one piece of paper and one quality of an unhealthy relationship on the other piece of paper
    • Bring the whole class together with students standing in a circle
    • Instruct students to crumple up each of the pieces of paper into a ball and have them throw their paper balls into the center of the circle
    • Have each student retrieve a new paper ball and take turns reading the quality aloud
    • After each quality, discuss whether this is a quality of a healthy relationship or an unhealthy relationship, encouraging students to reflect on their rationale
    • Collect any paper balls that identify the same quality
    • Repeat until all the qualities have been read
    • Recap the qualities that have been identified and supplement with any that have not been discussed by the students (refer to information in Core Knowledge Content)
    • If time permits, engage in a discussion about healthy and unhealthy relationships using the prompts below:
      • Why do people sometimes stay in an unhealthy relationship?
        • The expression "love is blind" is often true. Someone may feel they are so in love that they do not look deeply at the problems and stay in the relationship for the reasons below.
        • People who are in unhealthy relationships often believe things will get better, the problems are just a phase or that they can change their partner. Sometimes they will have seen this type of behaviour in another relationship, for example at home and not realize that the characteristics are unhealthy.
        • Teens may feel that having a partner is more important than getting out of an unhealthy relationship. They may be scared to break it off either because they feel they cannot cope without the other person or the other person may be abusive or violent towards them. (Source: Teaching Sexual Health)
      • What can you do if you know someone is in an unhealthy relationship?
        • If someone feels that their relationship is unhealthy they should talk to their partner and make it clear the relationship will end unless things change. Talking to friends or others they trust is important - often friends can provide some insight by letting you know how they see the relationship. If violence and abuse are present in the relationship then talking to a counsellor may help.


      • Rather than having students write and read their ideas, simply do this in the format of a class discussion
      • Incorporate this activity into the Healthy Relationships PowerPoint presentation immediately after presenting the S.H.A.R.E. slide
  • Knowing the signs
    Time: 10-15 minutes



    • Introduce the activity by stating that sometimes it is necessary to step back and evaluate our romantic relationships. Often we cannot see the unhealthy trends when we are in the relationship.
    • Create a T-chart on the whiteboard and label one column "Healthy" and the other column "Unhealthy"
    • Hand out the Relationship Statement cards giving one or two to each student
    • Select one student to read his or her statement card aloud to the class
    • Ask the student to then place the cards in the T-chart under the appropriate column (Healthy or Unhealthy)
    • Open a discussion about the statement and whether it represents a healthy relationship or an unhealthy relationship
      • Ask the students to explain their rationale
      • Supplement or clarify information using the answer key and Core Knowledge Content as needed


    • Allow students to complete this activity in small groups
      • Divide the statements among the different groups or print additional statement cards to allow each group to work with the full set

Consult Your School's Public Health Nurse

Your school's public health nurse can help you prepare for delivering this presentation and can assist you in developing engaging projects and extension activities. To reach your school's public health nurse, contact healthyschools@niagararegion.ca or 905-688-8248 ext. 7379.

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