Instructions: Facilitator performs the below:

Draw/Project the diagram into a shared visible space.

Prompt students to write down: 3 qualities that make a good ________.(e.g. friend)

Randomly solicit students to contribute 3 different qualities. Write these where x, y, and z are shown. (Make sure they are conceptually different).

Field clarifying questions about x, y, and z, if any.

Prompt students to imagine that they live in a hypothetical world where only two of these three qualities exist, BUT they each individually get to choose for themselves which two qualities they are willing to live with, and which one they will live without. (e.g. if they are considering things they look for in a friend, and their choices are honesty, kindness, and fun, they must choose just 2 of these.   

Ask: how many students chose both x and y for their two. Write down the # in the circle between x and y. Do the same for y and z, & z and x.

Prompt discussion: will folks who choose x and y, say why they did? Etc.

Go deeper: what would x be like without z? (e.g. what does it mean to have an honest friend who is also NOT kind? Does this change how we think about honesty or kindness?)

And: What questions does this raise for you about ______? (e.g. friendship)

Purpose: Elicit conceptual clarity around everyday values. Do our values stand alone? Do they take on their meaning from an interplay with other values?

This activity was designed by Center Graduate Fellow David Phelps.