Activity III

Activity #3: Snowflake Activity

Description

This activity helps participants to see how our perspective guides our actions and how we can feel “right” or “wrong” based on simple actions. It then leads into a discussion about the ways we are different.

Objectives

  • To discuss fitting in or being different and what we can/cannot change about ourselves.
  • To share our feelings about being different and sharing commonalities

 

Requirements & Materials

Group Size:     any

Time:               20 minutes

Space:              any, no restrictions or recommendations

Materials:        sheet of paper for each participant that is the same size. Easiest is 8 ½ x 11 standard white paper.

Directions

1        Pass out one sheet of paper to every participant.

2        Instruct the group to hold the paper in their hands and close their eyes.

3        With their eyes closed, tell the group to listen and follow your directions.  (Do not expand on these directions.  Simply repeat the instructions if there are questions.)

 

  1. Fold the paper in half.
  2. Fold the paper in half again.
  3. Tear off the top left corner of the paper.
  4. Turn the paper upside down and tear off the top left corner.
  5. Open the paper up, hold it out in front of you, and open your eyes.

 

4        Process the activity using some or all of the following questions.

 

Discussion Questions

  • What is the first thing you did when you opened your eyes? (Usually looked at your own paper creation – then looked around at others.)
  • When looking at others creations – what were you looking for? Why?
  • Did anyone look around to see if someone else’s paper looked like yours?  If so, why?
  • Did anyone feel like slinking down or hiding your paper because it looked different from someone else’s?  If so, why?
  • Raise your hand if you think you did it right? Raise your hand if you think you did it wrong? Comments? How do we know everyone did it right/perfectly?
  • Lets now connect this with school and what its like on the first day of school especially if you are new to the school/town or even worse its mid-year. You walk into school – what might you look for? (Hold up your paper and try to find someone whose creation looks like yours – make a connection.)
  • What are things we can change about ourselves right away to look like we fit in or are like others? (examples are the outside elements: clothing, hair style, slang, etc)
  • What are things about ourselves that we either can’t change or shouldn’t have to – to be liked or fit in (examples are the diversity aspects: race, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, gender, etc.)
  • This activity is called the Snowflake Activity – what do we know about snowflakes (like fingerprints) no two are alike.
  • What are the advantages of an environment where everyone can be proud of whom they are instead of wanting to hide because they are different (or they feel as if people think they are wrong or bad because they are different)?
  • What can we do at this school to help everyone to fit in? So that every snowflake is accepted, or celebrated and that we don’t try to make everyone the same?
  • What would have happened if you did this exercise with your eyes open?

 

Extensions

  • Use a few colored sheets of paper and discuss how it felt being different automatically? Who noticed or didn’t the colored paper? What does that mean? What does it mean to notice “color” or difference? What do people mean when they say “I didn’t notice he was black” or “it doesn’t matter that they are gay?”
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