Weekly Tribes 2015 – 2016: Another Venn Diagram…!

This comes from Amir, in Brazil. Amir is currently a student in the Tribes BOC (Basic Online Course):

Since I mostly work with individuals and not with groups, I adapted the “Appreciating Others” and “I am Proud Appreciation Circle” and had my student write them down in a piece of paper inside two separate circles.
After he had written a few statements in each circle, he read them back to me, explaining a few that were dubious, then I had him assign a letter to each statement.
Then on the whiteboard I drew a Venn diagram and had him attempt to reclassify the statements into each category, where one represented what he was proud of appreciating (regarding himself), the other what he appreciated in others and in the middle of the diagram what both categories shared in common. This allowed for some really good reflection questions not only regarding ourselves such as what are the behaviors and qualities we appreciate and prefer but also what we appreciate in others.

It was nice to notice that what he was proud of and appreciated for himself was at times quite similar to what he appreciated in others, it helped us reflect on how some aspects of our lives are not only important for us to follow (and be proud of) but also to seek it in others. This allowed us to talk about peer pressure and being accepted by others as well as having others appreciate and accept us for what we have to offer, especially after being able to highlight what qualities we are proud of and how people around us could benefit from what we have to share and contribute.

I thought that maybe this activity could be expanded into doing the opposite, or what we dislike, in ourselves or in our actions, and similarly what we dislike in others. But when we are working with children with special needs, this activity can backfire and may lose its purpose since certain things that we are born with are unchangeable. I would have to rethink a better strategy for dealing with our own shortcomings.

Thanks Amir!
For older students this might be some nice ‘homework’ or a pre-writing strategy; in and of itself it is a reflective practice, done in small groups it becomes an act of inclusion and influence. Lots of possibilities!