Many months ago I bookmarked a blog post entitled “What I want my teachers to know about me” with the intent of adapting the concept for my own classes.
In the original post, the teacher (@Allanahk) had each of her students create a slide in response to “five things my new teacher needs to know about me”. As much as I loved the idea, I wanted my students to have more privacy with this assignment so they’d be more likely to share. So instead, I created a master template in Google Slides that each student would use, with the following prompts:
- My picture
- Tell me a little about yourself!
- Are there things in life you really HATE?!!
- Are there things in life you really LOVE?!!
- What do you hope to do after high school?
- Do you do anything outside of school you’d like to share? (Clubs? Sports? Cadets? Hobbies? etc.)
- Is there anything you’re really proud of?
- Is there anything specific you’d like to do in this class?
- What mark do you hope to get in this class?
- Is there anything I need to be concerned about for you to succeed in this class?
- <A blank slide for you to add anything you like!>
…followed by two instructions:
- Add relevant pictures from the Internet to all your slides. Have a little fun with it!
- Feel free to personalize this slideshow however you like!
In the opening instructions, I will tell the students that their slideshows would be private and not shared with the class — again, so they’d more inclined to share openly and honestly. I will also let them know that I’m available to help them insert pictures if needed, and give them an opportunity to use the class green screen and/or Photoshop (or now, Affinity Photo, which I just installed in the lab). I want the activity to be fun by letting them personalize all the slides with pictures and other content.
Following is the template. For anyone wishing to adapt the slideshow for their own use, it’s available at https://goo.gl/iJ0h5M.
This activity will undoubtedly stretch out the amount of time it takes for the students to introduce themselves, but I think the benefits are worth it:
- It will give me some insight into each student’s background, in their own words;
- it will give me an opportunity to assess their basic computer skills and writing level; and
- it will get the students doing something hands-on and fun (hopefully!) right away.
I’d welcome any feedback, especially from teachers that have done something similar in their own class. What do you think of this approach to getting the students to introduce themselves? Are there any additional questions I should ask? Have you done something similar before, and if so, can you share some of your highlights?