Identity Webs

Mike knew immediately that ice hockey and basketball needed to be front and center on his identity web. Cormac didn’t know what exactly to include … until he looked up the meaning of his name—also his grandfather’s name—and discovered its old Irish meaning.  Sophie’s identity web highlights the celebration of Diwali as well as favorite foods and friends.

“Our physical characteristic may not be the most important part of our identity,” teacher Bebhinn Fahy said to her fourth graders.

“It’s what you are made of—but not skin and bones,” commented one student. “It’s what you are on the inside, not the outside,” said another.

While Fahy does an identity web or similar activity with her class each year to help students understand themselves, this year’s project included a purposeful focus on diversity. “I'm growing and changing each year, and that has a great deal to do with the conversations, readings and actions of the All-In Action Group,” Fahy reflects. She's referring to the group of educators who meet regularly to process best ways of teaching equity and inclusion. 

“If a student shares information on their identity web that differs from the dominant culture, we want that student to feel connected to the learning community while also feeling pride in their own distinct perspective,” said Fahy.  “We also want students to be curious about other people and find out about them.”