Distance Learning: A Fun Self-Confidence Building Game

I’m calling if Self Confidence Skribbl, and it might just be the most fun way I’ve ever pushed middle schoolers outside of their comfort zones to help them see just how wonderful they are.

Here’s how it works:

  1. Begin by providing time for each person to make a list of 10 things they love about themselves. I like to play quiet music and invite students to turn their cameras off while they think. They should write the list down on a piece of paper and make sure they are things they’re comfortable sharing. For some, this process will be very uncomfortable or frustrating, so I try to give the process some space. In total, this step probably took about 5 minutes.
  2. One person should create a private game using the free online tool Skribbl, or another online drawing tool of your choice. Create a private room in Skribbl by visiting https://skribbl.io/, creating your character, and then clicking Create Private Room. From there, copy the link via the “Invite Your Friends!” link at the bottom of the page and send it to the chat. Each participant can use that link to join the private room. (Please note that Skribbl is fun free game, but it has a lot of ads! You can see one for trucks in the photo above. If this is a dealbreaker for you, there are likely other great options out there. This might also work using a Google Jamboard, it just wouldn’t have the scoring and automatic word assignment feature.)
  3. Pick a player to be the first subject. Have them enter their of ten things they love about themselves in the “Custom words” box, in the Settings menu in the Lobby. Each word or complete phrase should be separated by a comma. After they finish entering their words, they should be sure to check the “Use custom words exclusively” box.
  4. Start the game! One player will draw at a time, and they can earn points by having other players guess what they are attempting to draw. There are multiple drawing tools, and players can guess as the drawing takes shape. Remember that the word bank is coming from a list of things the drawer loves about themselves (So guessing “potato” or “mountain” probably won’t get you anywhere… but it’s likely to happen anyway because teens).
  5. Watch each student laugh until they cry trying to draw wonderful personal attributes* while the whole group shouts things they love about each other through Zoom. For example: “I thought for sure it must be generous. You’re the most generous person I know!” or “IS IT CARING? BECAUSE YOU ARE CARING AS HECK AND ALSO I’M ONLY 50 POINTS FROM FIRST PLACE!
  6. Repeat with everyone you know because this is just the best way to spend 30 minutes of Zoom time.

*If you have never tried to draw things like “brave” or “genuine” before, prepare yourself for utter hilarity!

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