Activity
Community building activities, Reflective activities, Setting the tone activities

Checking in with GIF, Emoji or Meme

Maha Bali

Maha Bali

A fun and quick way to check in or end a class with your students.

Share:

ACTIVITY PURPOSE

To check-in or reflect using visuals quickly at the beginning (warm-up) or end (reflection) of class.

USEFUL FOR

Checking how students feel.

PREPARATION

None, you just need a space where students can post their visuals.

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Create a space where students can submit a visual to represent how they feel. This space can be a Zoom chat, a Google doc or Google slide deck, or Slack space.
  2. Ask your students how they feel, and to post how they feel visually. The visuals can be anything, but some very easy ones are to use Emojis (one or more) in the Zoom chat, on Slack, etc. or to use GIFs. They can find them on GIPHY or you can install the GIPHY plugin on Slack to make it easier.
  3. Remember to ask students to include alternative text for GIFs if they use them.
  4. Another way to do this is to invite them to use Memes to express how they feel. This can be either manually by having them choose any image and add text on it via a simple tool like Paint or Google slides, or via a Meme Generator.

DURATION

5 minutes for students to post how they feel. Depending on how long you want to take to comment on how they feel, this could take 10 more minutes.

ADAPTATIONS AND EXAMPLES

  • Use the tool that’s most familiar to you and your students for adding the ‘how do you feel’ visual. Zoom chat is enough for emojis if you are already on Zoom. Slack makes it easy to use emojis or GIFs. Google slides are useful for adding still images and creating memes manually. Use whatever will take less time for students, so they can focus on expressing their emotions rather than technically posting the visual.
  • Remind students to use alt-text for images.
  • Some polling tools such as Mentimeter (paid version) may already have question types where people can vote by emojis, so you could display some emojis for students to choose from. Within Zoom, you could display some emojis or images and students could use the Zoom annotation feature (or use icons in Google slides) to indicate which one represents how they feel.
  • This activity can be done asynchronously if you want students to finish reading or watching something and express how they feel about it in an asynchronous space like Slack or Google doc.

TECHNICAL REQUIREMENTS

Dependent on the tool you use.

USEFUL RESOURCES

Do you have any suggestions? Please share them in the comments below.

ABOUT

  • Educator prep: Minimal
  • Student prep: None
  • Synchronous, Asynchronous
  • Shared online space
  • Duration: < 5 mins

This activity is one of a series of activities from Equity Unbound, focused on equitable online community building. 

Find out more

Do you have an activity that you would like to suggest?

Do you have feedback or suggestions?

More activities

Learning path

Community Building

Curated Activities

Guidance and help

Curated Activities

Reflective Activities

Curated Activities

Ongoing engagement

Curated Activities

Liberating Structures

Curated Activities

Setting the tone activities

Curated Activities

Introductory activities

Activity

Sailboat Retrospective for Reflection

Activity

Live, Love, Learn and Leave a Legacy

Activity

Roses, Thorns, and Buds 

Activity

Decolonising Academic Writing through Spoken Word Poetry

Activity

Origin Stories

Activity

Learning to Love

Activity

Getting at Metaphor

Activity

Personalised Conversation Cards

Curated Activities

Warm up activities

Activity

Guess The Topic Mingle

Activity

Ikigai: Help Students Find Their Purpose

Activity

Something behind you

Activity

Auditory Affect

Activity

Creativity Booster: 16 Squares

Activity

Creativity Booster: An Ode to the Other Hand

Activity

Creativity Booster: 5 Senses

Activity

Creativity Booster: Yes, Let’s!

Activity

Ice Cream/Broccoli: Reflection on Enjoyment and Value

Activity

Create a Fake Photo Group Assignment

Activity

What We Don’t Know About Each Other

Activity

Share Music and Create a Class Playlist

Activity

Would You Rather?

Activity

Creating Escape Room Experience For Students

Activity

I Wish My Students/Teacher Knew

Activity

Using Metaphors to Express Thoughts

Activity

Using Dominoes in Teaching

Activity

Desert Island Songs

Activity

The Shape of You

Activity

Words From Your Names

Activity

What Can You Do With A…?

Top Tips

Tips For Increasing Engagement In Discussions

Activity

Choose a Plant

Activity

Which Picture Best?

Activity

Imaginary Buffet (or Potluck)

Activity

PowerPoint Karaoke

Activity

Office Hour Scheduling via Google Calendar

Activity

Tiny Tales

Activity

Cognitive/exam Wrappers for Metacognition

Activity

Self-assessment Tool (of social justice in your teaching) from DISCs (Disciplines Inquiring into Societal Challenges)

Activity

Language Portrait

Activity

Lost in Translation

Activity

Wheel of Life for Student Self-help

Activity

Alternative Approaches to Grading

Activity

Thick Greetings

Activity

Estimate workload

Activity

Simple Metacognitive Activities

Activity

Tiny Demons/Drawing Monsters

Activity

Start/Stop/Continue

Activity

Survey students early in the semester: Pre-Course Survey

Activity

Pass the Paper

Activity

Gratitude Journal

Activity

15% solutions

Activity

Two-minute paper 

Checklist / tool

Karen Ray Costa’s Trauma-Aware Teaching Checklist

Resource

Loglines

Activity

Appreciative Interviews

Activity

Pop-up Psychogeography Journey Journal

Guide

Some Safety Considerations for Online Community Building

Activity

While We Wait

Activity

What kind of animal are you?

Activity

Two by Three by Bradford

Activity

Troika Consulting – Adaptation for Class Community Building

Activity

TRIZ

Video discussion

Trauma-Informed Pedagogy & How is Your Heart?

Activity

Tour of Where You Are

Activity

Third Places for Ongoing Community Building

Activity

Theater of the Oppressed: Opposites

Activity

Theatre of the Oppressed: Image Theatre

Activity

Teaching Ethics with Theatre of the Oppressed and Liberating Structures

Activity

Surrealist Free Drawing Introductions

Activity

Studio visits

Activity

Structured Dialogues

Activity

Share an object from home

Activity

Room 101

Activity

Purpose to Practice

Activity

Pass the Ball & How Do You Make Rice?

Activity

Meditation

Activity

Wild Tea / Mad Tea

Activity

Introductions: Story of Your Name

Activity

Human Scavenger Hunt

Activity

Four Ideas for Checking In

Activity

Daily Creates

Activity

Critical Uncertainties

Activity

Conversation Cafe

Activity

Collaborative Storytelling

Activity

Collaborative Literature Review Matrix

Activity

Authentic Open Letter/Video Addressing Students

Activity

Asynchronous & Synchronous Introductions

Activity

9 Whys of Liberating Structures

Activity

Spiral Journal

Activity

Annotate the Syllabus

We would like to hear your feedback!

Maha Bali is undertaking research to discover how educators are using these open resources from Equity Unbound/OneHE. Click the button to find out more and to participate.