Gather students in an activity to help them explore and appreciate their similarities and differences.
This activity supports the development of the following social-emotional skills: self-awareness, social awareness, and relationship skills.
Divide your class into groups of 4-5 students, and try to group together students who might initially perceive more differences than similarities between themselves. Ask students in each group to think about ways they are alike, and work together to create a list of traits that each group member shares in common with everyone else in the group. For example, perhaps everyone in the group loves eating chocolate, has visited another city, or speaks more than one language.
Give everyone 5-10 minutes to make a list of everything they share in common with their group, and identify as many similarities as they can between themselves. Then, bring them together to discuss what they discovered. You might ask:
Write down students’ responses on sticky notes and place them on a board or wall visible to the class. Alternatively, use a tool such as Padlet or Google Jamboard to create a digital board that students can add their thoughts and ideas to.
Next, ask students to individually think about 1-3 characteristics about themselves that make them unique or special, and then share their responses with the class. You might ask:
Add students’ responses to the physical or digital board from the previous step.
Guide students through a post-activity reflection by asking the following questions:
This activity was created in partnership with Kristin Harrington.