Interest Web

zygiella_web.png
by permission of: Laura Bassett

Grade 9-12

Created by Jonathan Wood
Boise State University
EdTech 523
Spring Semester, 2011

Traditional face-to-face activity

I actually came up with this ice breaker when I first started teaching in face to face classes. Students would post their "profile" sheets on their desks and then they could walk around the classroom looking at everyone's profile sheets to complete their "web." I actually think it fits the online environment much better.

Modified online version

Each student completes a questionnaire identifying several things about themselves and posts the information to the class message board. The questionnaire asks about their likes and interests. In addition, they will write a small paragraph about themselves of about 2-400 words. After completing the questions, students are then asked to look over their classmates' profiles and make a "web" where every student is linked to at least one other student on a common interest.

Example

A student's final work product might look like this:
Virtual_IceBreaker_Graphic.png

Variations

Teachers can create their own question set, making sure there are enough questions where similarities can be found. They might also enlist students into creating their own question set prior to starting the activity. Teachers might also limit the number of "links" a single person in the web can have. For instance, limiting each person to only 3 direct links.

Pros

  • Students learn a little about each other because they have to search for similarities. They can't simply glance at each others' questionnaires.
  • Students learn what they have in common with each other.

Cons

  • Students do not directly interact with each other.
  • Students might not find direct links if questions are not broad enough.

Asynchronous

Online Asynchronous Classroom