Rationale: This activity allows students to begin to explore questions of self-identity and enables them to see what they have in common with others.
Objectives: To identify similarities and differences in the group.
Materials: Paper and pencil or marker for each student
Time: 30 minutes
- Ask students to draw a symbol to represent who they are. A symbol can be anything that characterizes the student, e.g. a ball for a basketball player, a tree for a nature lover.
- After they have finished, put the students in pairs and have them share with their partner what their symbol is and why they selected it.
- Ask if any volunteers want to share their symbol with the whole class. You may want to have everyone in the class share their symbol if you have time.
- Lead a class discussion using some or all of the questions that follow.
- How did you decide on your symbol? Was this decision easy or difficult?
- What patterns did you see in the groups’ symbols?
- What role do symbols play in your life? How do you use symbols with your friends and family?
- How can identifying similarities in a group foster positive relationships and help manage conflict?
Adapted from Exercise 1.4, Creating a Culture of Peace in the English Language Classroom by Alison Milofsky (United States Institute of Peace).
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