I was once the teacher in a classroom that seemed to have a lot of conflict. Students consistently displayed negative behaviour towards others and could not solve problems in a positive way. This meant I had to try extremely hard to create a more positive classroom environment and explicitly teach social skills.
The focus in the following activity, was ensuring children felt good about themselves and that they could also identify characterisitcs in others that are admirable. I began by asking a student sideways in front of the whiteboard and trace around their head. Students were then asked to say something positive about that child. I asked that students try to identify something about their personality, temperament or behaviour, not focus on their looks. Many times they began with saying, "She has nice shoes" or "She's beautiful". While we all may like hearing these things, the objective was not to focus on the physical appearance of others. Afterwards, the student was able to decorate their picture with a friend if they liked.