Over 9,000 people have been photographed for the project and that’s been a great way to get people to think about their labels and biases, and to see people that are different from them doing good things. Often, when we talk to schools, though, they ask if we have more ways the project can help with these topics.
So we assembled a team of teachers and youth program workers, and they have created a variety of activities that focus on social-emotional learning and social justice with the same approach as the original photo shoot activity: to encourage introspection and discussion rather than confrontation. The goals of these activities include identity exploration, positive relationships, anti-bullying, analyzing influences, interpersonal communication skills, active advocacy for self, and empathy for others.
Activities range from mini versions of the photo shoots, to drawing activities about your labels, to researching labels of historical figures, to matching games, to the story behind their name. Several have already been used in schools and youth organizations, with teachers impressed by the openness of their students in these kinds of discussions.
In July, we ran a public workshop at the JMAC in downtown Worcester, MA for educators to test out some of the activities and give feedback. Then in August, we were honored to host a three hour workshop at the Massachusetts Teachers Association (MTA) Summer Conference. This allowed Massachusetts teachers from around the state to learn about and participate in some of the activities themselves. Some even had their photos taken for the project. The feedback was very positive both on the workshop and the activities, and talk of bringing the project to their schools.
Although designed for middle and high school students, many are universal and we’ve run these activities with multiple groups of adults as well. This expands what we offer to colleges and businesses looking for different kinds of community building activities to go along with our original photo shoot exercise.
Our list of curriculum activities continues to grow and if you are an educator interested in using the programs with your students or are interested in joining the team and help build more modules, we look forward to hearing from you!
Learn more at noevil.co/activities