Community Building & SEL Activities for Hybrid Learning

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Alternatives, Inc.

Adapted from Community Building Activities for Remote Learning.

Find more resources and support here.

Simultaneous Teaching: The following activities can be facilitated with remote and in-person students at the same time. These activities can help meet students’ needs for connection, acknowledgement, play, and movement, while still maintaining physical distancing guidelines.

 

SEL check ins:

Mood Meter

    • “What emotion or color are you feeling today?”
    • From bottom to top: lower energy → high energy
    • From left to right: negative → positive
  • Facilitation tip: screen share and/or display Moodmeter on projector or SMART board

Needs Chart

    • “What is one thing you need today?”
    • “What is one action you can take to meet your need?”
    • Facilitate an activity to meet that need:
      • Appreciation / connection  → affirmation round
      • Fun & play / community → pass the stretch or charades
      • Balance / peace → mindfulness exercise
      • Creativity / self-expression → show & tell
  • Facilitation tip: screen share and/or display Needs Chart on projector or SMART board

Pass the Stretch

Each person has a turn to demonstrate a stretch of their choice, and then the whole group does the stretch at the same time. This is done until each person has demonstrated a stretch.

Facilitation tips:

  • Ask remote participants to turn on video
  • Project the remote students Google Meet onto a projector or SMART Board, and turn your computer camera towards in-person students, so that all students can see each other
  • Facilitator go first to model and set the tone
  • Invite each person to describe their stretch out loud for anyone who can’t see
  • Each person passes to the next

 

Games:

Red or Blue

This activity builds awareness of our similarities and differences

Each participant gets a red item and blue item. The facilitator asks a series of either/or questions and the participants hold up the item that corresponds to their answer.

Remote participants – please turn on your cameras!

Statements:

  • Hold up your red item if you are an only child (or hold up your blue item if you have siblings).
  • Hold up your red item if you like to eat pizza (or hold up your blue item if you don’t like pizza).
  • Hold up your red item if you were born in Chicago (or hold up your blue item if you were born somewhere else).
    • Someone who was born elsewhere – share out!
  • Hold up your red item if you like savory food, or hold up your blue item if you like sweet food.
    • What’s your favorite food?
  • Hold up your red item if you are an emotion-driven person, or hold up your blue item if you are a logic-driven person.
  • Hold up your red item if you think that people can change, or hold up your blue item if people are who they are.

Facilitation tips

  • Ask remote participants to turn on their cameras
  • Project the remote students Google Meet onto a projector or SMART Board, and turn your computer camera towards in-person students, so that all students can see each other
  • Give advance notice so students come prepared with their red or blue items.
  • Stop screen sharing so everyone can see each other.
  • Invite students to suggest questions.
  • Ask follow up questions for students to share out
  • Academic twist: ask questions related to your lesson plan

Charades

  • Participants act out a word or phrase, and their teammates guess what it is.
  • Getting-to-know-you version: “Write down 3 verbs – something you like doing, something you don’t like doing, and something you want to try. Act out each one.”
  • Check-in version: “Act out one thing you did this week.”
  • SEL version: “Act out an emotion from the Mood Meter.”

Facilitation tips:

  • Project the remote students Google Meet onto a projector or SMART Board, and turn your computer camera towards in-person students, so that all students can see each other.
  • Ask remote participants to turn on video
  • Ask everyone to unmute and guess out loud

Simon Says: 

One person is the leader and calls out the actions. Everyone else must follow the leader and do the action, but only when Simon says. For example, “Simon says, touch your toes.” Everyone must touch their toes.Then the leader has to try and get everyone to do an action without saying Simon says. If someone does the action and the leader did not say “Simon says,” that person is out of the game. For example, if the leader says just “touch your toes” and someone touches their toes, they are out of the game.

Sample actions:

  • Touch your… toes / head / elbows / knees / ears / belly.
  • Turn around in a circle.
  • Hop on one foot.
  • Make a noise like a… cat / duck / elephant / snake / dog.
  • Pretend you are… painting a picture / driving a car / stirring a big pot.

Facilitation tips:

  • Project the remote students Google Meet onto a projector or SMART Board, and turn your computer camera towards in-person students, so that all students can see each other.
  • Ask remote participants to turn on video.

Guess Who Celebrity Edition: 

Each person is assigned a famous person and everyone else has to ask questions in order to discover who the person is.

Show & Tell Storytelling

The activity: Each person takes turns sharing an item and telling the story behind the item / what it means to them.

Different versions:

  • Drawing version: Provide drawing prompt & ask students to share
  • Photo version: Students screen share a photo
  • Check-in version: Students share an item that represents how they are feeling or what they did this weekend
  • Themed version: Students shared something related to… Friendship, Justice, the book we are reading, etc
  • Put item close to screen and guess as you pull back

Facilitation tips:

  • Give advance notice so students come prepared
  • Project the remote students Google Meet onto a projector or SMART Board, and turn your computer camera towards in-person students, so that all students can see each other.
  • Have a few students share each day, or everyone on one day – depending on how much time you want to set aside
  • Invite students to respond to the sharer in the chat with comments and questions
  • Each person passes to the next
  • Stop screen sharing so the focus is on each other

Emoji Quiz:

Participants will guess what different emoji combinations mean (i.e. ?? is Batman and ? ? is Birdbox). Emoji quiz answer key

  • Facilitation tip: screen share and/or display Emoji Quiz on projector or SMART board

Two truths and a lie: 

Each person in the group shares three facts about themselves, two true and one false. The group must guess which piece of information is actually a lie.

Facilitation tips:

  • Project the remote students Google Meet onto a projector or SMART Board, and turn your computer camera towards in-person students, so that all students can see each other.

Kahoot!

You can use Kahoot! to explore and facilitate interactive question-based activities, or create your own. Create a free account or click “play as guest.” Check out some of the following collections of Kahoot!s:

  • Facilitation tip: screen share and/or display Kahoot! on projector or SMART board

Drip (from Circles & Ciphers)

Everyone turns off the camera or goes through their bag for 1 minute to prepare and show off something of significance that expresses their style/swag/drip. Each person takes turns showing their clothing, playing music, etc. that expresses themselves. 

‘Sing that Word’ (from Circles & Ciphers)

The facilitator splits the group into two teams, and shares a word. Each team has to come up with as many songs that use a particular word during the breakout time. When someone mentions a song, they have to be able to sing or rap the lyrics (they can’t just name the title). At the end of the time, the teams share the tally of how many songs they came up with. The team with the most songs wins. 

For more resources, explore Social Emotional Learning in the Remote Learning Environment from Chicago Public Schools.

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