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Mobile-Driven Identity Activities

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Leveraging the students’ mobile devices has become an ongoing and integrated practice of my face-to-face undergraduate course on Interpersonal Relations.  What follows are the mobile and technology driven activities completed during the class on personal-identity.

I Am Poems

Students are given the following template and asked to fill in the blanks to create their own I Am Poems.

Once the poems are written, students are provided with a link to a shared Google Doc Presentation and instructions to use one of the presentation slides to compose their poem and include a photo from their Facebook accounts or one taken with their mobile that symbolizes the essence of their identify.  After all students complete this task, the presentation is projected via an interactive board.  Students, one at a time, read their poems to their classmates.

We made an “I AM” poem, which I thought was very fun. It was interesting to see the imaginations on some classmates. These activities are what makes the class fun.

We wrote ” I am” poems which was really cool too. I liked seeing what everyone had to say about themselves. I got to see a side of them that I probably never would have.

Values Identification

Students are asked to choose their three top values from a list of values. They are then given the task to locate objects in their environment that symbolize these values and take photos using their mobile devices. Directions are given to email their photos to a Flickr account set up for this purpose.  Students do not need to have an account on Flickr to do so.  The steps to set this up are as follows:

  • Set up an account on Flickr –
  • Photos can then be emailed directly to this Flickr account.  “You can upload photos to Flickr from your camera using your unique email upload address. When you upload photos via email, the subject line is used as the title of your photo, and the body of the email is used as the description” (

Students are given the email address to send their photos to Flickr along with the instructions to put the name of their value in the subject line and why they selected that value in the description. Since all the group’s images will are sent to this single Flickr account, students are able to view each other’s photographs through the Flickr website projected on a screen if in a face-to-face setting.

Going over our values was an important part of the activity (I personally can say) because our values play a critical role in our self-esteem, they dictate what is important to us.

Peer Feedback

The Johari Window is introduced to the students.  The focus of this activity is on the window known to others but not known to self.  Since the students have been working together for several weeks, they have some knowledge of their classroom peers.  As such, they are instructed to provide feedback to those three or four students with whom they have had most contact during the initial weeks of the course.  Feedback is provided in the form of three descriptive adjectives texted to the person receiving the feedback.

We sent messages to other people describing how we saw them when we first met in class. This was surprising to me because I received different feedback then I would expect..

Written by Jackie Gerstein, Ed.D.

February 1, 2012 at 10:12 pm

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