To the Teacher:
This activity helps students get to know each other through art: They pair up, interview each other, and then create a drawing or collage based on what they heard that they can share with the class. It’s a great activity for the beginning of a school session.
Note: This activity can be done through online platforms such as Zoom.
Before beginning the activity, ask students to assemble from around the house any materials that they can use to make a drawing or collage. This might include any kind of paper; pencils; colored pencils; markers; scissors; fabric; pictures or text from magazines, books or newspapers; string; glue sticks – or any other items that can be made into art.
You might also consider setting up yourself and your students to use free online applications for drawing or creating a collage, such as:
- ABCya, a paint program: https://www.abcya.com/games/abcya_paint
- Padlet, a program that allows users to post photos and add comments to a virtual bulletin board: https://padlet.com/
Make a Gift Drawing
- Review guidelines for active listening
- One mic
- Give the person who is speaking your full attention
- Be aware of your body language and expression
- Encourage the other person to speak
- Respect confidentiality
- Explain that students will pair up with someone and after talking with them, make a drawing, collage, or artwork based on what they heard and understood.
- Post the questions below for students to read. Feel free to add questions appropriate for your group.
- Ask students to decide in advance which five to seven questions they are going to ask their partner. Tell them that if their partner doesn’t want to answer a particular question, they should move on to the next question.
- What is something you are proud of?
- Who is someone you care about?
- Who is someone who made a difference to you and how?
- Do you have any hobbies or things you love to do these days at home?
- What’s been challenging during these times?
- What would you like to change in the next few months to a year in the world?
- What’s one thing you will do to help make that happen?
- What’s another goal you have in the next 5-10 years?
- What help do you need?
- Pair students up in breakout rooms and ask them to take turns asking one another the questions they have decided to ask. Remind them that if the other person doesn’t want to answer a question, they should move on to the next one.
- When each pair has finished answering the questions, bring them back to the main room and have them make a drawing or collage based on what they heard. Encourage them to include something that may help or make a difference to their partner.
- When students have completed their artwork, have each student share what they made for their partner:
- If possible, ask students to show the drawing or collage on camera. If that is not possible, ask students to describe their artwork to the class.
- Ask them to appreciate their partner and their drawing gifts.
- If possible, students can take a picture of their drawing and email it to their partner or send it via snail mail.
Large Group Processing
Invite students to share:
- What did you think about this activity?
- What did you like about it? What, if anything, was challenging about it?
- What was it like sharing with your partner?
- If you were going to do this again, what would you do differently? What questions might you ask?