1. Wow! What a great blog post about a great day! I already e-mailed the teachers and administrators at my school and shared your Photopeach slideshow with them, and I'm going to share this blog post with them too. I hope that we'll be able to do something similar next year. I may very well be in touch with you for some more details. I also tweeted about the possibility of having a number of schools do their Identity Days on the same day and share the "Identity Days" on a global scale using Skype. I think this would be a great way to celebrate a "school community" but also a "global community" too. If we're able to arrange this Global Identity Day, I hope that you'll be a part of it too!

    Thanks George for another inspiring blog post!


    • George

      Thanks Aviva! It was SUCH A GREAT DAY! I am still buzzing. I am so proud of my staff and students and like that I am feeling this buzz going into summer instead of that dragging feeling we sometimes get as teachers. I think the Skype idea is pretty cool but we have to do some upgrades in hardware to make sure it would look great. Let's see if we can start something with a Global Identity day :)

      Thanks for your comment!

      • George, I think that a Global Identity Day would be a wonderful one! You can tell from this blog post and from your comment that it was an AMAZING day, and I think it would be awesome to be involved in it too. I'm still thinking about this Skype idea, but if we were to do it, I think it would almost be as a "small group Skype call," where someone could go around with a laptop and an external webcam (better quality picture) and share what some students created with a few comments from students too. The idea is just starting to form, so I'll have to do some more thinking over the summer.:) Thanks for getting me thinking though and sharing this wonderful day with all of us!


  2. Melody_ugdsb

    Wow! What a wonderful idea! It sounds like your school had such a great day! I would love to do something like that next year. I'm thinking that it would be a really good way to tap into my students' passions early in the school year…a way for me to really get to know who they are and what they love. I'll definitely be speaking with other teachers at my school about this idea. The 'wheels are turning'! Thanks, George!


    • George

      Passion is so important and if you can tap in early, you will have an amazing year. Thanks so much for the comment!

  3. Greta Sandler

    This is just amazing! I bet it must have been one of the most incredible experiences! I was also really touched by Marley's story.

    I'm an ESL teacher, from Bs. As. Argentina. We are doing a project on teaching social skills in the classroom, and I really hope I can do an Identity Fair with my class. I'm definitely sharing this with my school.

    Thanks for sharing all your wonderful ideas with us. You have no idea how inspiring they are.

    Congrats to you, your staff and your students!

    • George

      Thanks so much for your comments. We were very proud of Marley as we were all of our students! They did an amazing job!

  4. George,

    Thanks for sharing your special day with us! I enjoyed the pictures you tweeted during the day. With each picture I imagined how I will be able to bring this to life in my classroom. It may not happen school wide, but I would love to do this at my grade level at the beginning of the year as a way to get to know the students. Your passion is contagious!


    Thanks for the work you put into making this day happen. It's a great idea!

    • George

      Thanks Lisa…I think that the seed has been planted and that you will do an amazing job with this in your classroom. I think passion is easy when you derive your enthusiasm from kids. They get so excited about the little things that it is impossible to not do the same. I appreciate your comments!

  5. Enjoyed following this on Twitter last night and thanks for posting about it in more detail today on your blog.

    Well done to all involved and especially to your Assistant Principal, Cheryl.

    • George

      Thanks Fred…If the tweets only inspired one person to do the same in their classroom, then posting them was worth it!

  6. It is very rarely that I get totally surprised by something. This shocked and impressed me so much I actually had tears (happy) in my eyes at the thought! Absolutely fascinating! Thank you so much for sharing your AP's WONDERFUL idea! I'm awestruck…

    • George

      Wow Jac! Those are extremely kind words. It took me awhile to come down after the day since it was so great to get to know everyone. I was so happy with how everything turned out. It is so important that you have a great staff working together to do these things; I am blessed to have that!

    • George

      Don't worry about it Chris…I have a feeling I will be borrowing stuff from you as well!

  7. Jodi Gurr

    Wow! This day sounds absolutely amazing! I will definitely talk to my principal about doing a similar activity this school year.

    We are currently organizing our second annual Western Canada Character Education Conference at the Delta Calgary South for Nov. 5 and 6, 2010. I think most of the presentors have been booked for this year but we would really be interested in having you speak at our 2011 conference, if you're interested in sharing the fabulous things going on in your school. Here is the website: http://www.verney.ca/wccec2010/agenda.php
    None of the information about breakout speakers has been added yet but we're hoping it will be soon.

    Thanks so much for sharing this wonderful, community – building idea!

  8. Jodi Gurr

    Whoops! Just re-read what I wrote and realized I spelled presenters incorrectly! Guess my brain is officially on summer vacation!

  9. Hi George, for some reason, I'm just now finding this post. What an awesome idea! As our school moves to a true middle school concept, I'm going to push for this kind of thing. At the very least I know my team will be doing it. Congratulate your AP for me.

    • George

      I would love to see what you do with it in your own school Matt! The kids and staff loved it and it will now become a "tradition" at our school. The nice thing when you let the students lead in this initiative, there is not that much work. The benefits however are endless.

      Thanks for your comment and I will ensure that I share with my AP :)

  10. I am just finding your blog post and was wondering if you'd be willing to share some more about this. I think it would be a good culminating activity for the end of the year; a break from all the testing.

    Please email me at shelcows AT gmail DOT com

  11. Allison

    Hi! Cool idea and sounds like it was very engaging and worthwhile. I have a couple of questions: Did all students visit each of the classrooms? Did students stand by their displays and explain them while others were touring around? If students were standing by their displays, how did they have a chance to see the rest of the kids' projects? Thanks for the info. :)

  12. Hi George,

    It is the end of my school year and I am having an identity day with my seventh graders. It is not school wide, but I am planning on organizing a school wide identity day next year. I am working to become a "school teacher" rather than a "classroom teacher" . Thanks for sharing your identity day with us!!

  13. Y5Teacher

    Identity Day was a HUGE success with my Y5's today. Thanks for the sharing of the idea on Twitter! I will surely do it again in future. Children LOVED the interaction with other children.

  14. […] groups were so interested in all what Y5 had to share and some deep discussions took place. The Identity Day idea originates from a Canadian school [see the link]. After sharing everything in the hall, […]

  15. Donald Grimshaw

    What do you think about this at the secondary level. I want to try this because I think too many times kids begin to feel like a score on an exam. When we value them, they value themselves. It would also help secondary teachers see the kids in their classroom rather than the subject they teach. Elementary teachers recognize that they teach little kids and will tell you that. Secondary people teach history or science or math unless the have recognized the importance of relationships in the classroom.

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  18. Christel

    Hi, I used to do a version of this but at the beginning of the year. I asked students what they were experts in and they had a full week of LA and other time to prepare. It was amazing how all students found their own uniqueness, even those who generallys struggled with self esteem and school studies. The other key point was that I learned alot about my students that I may have never known. Doing this activity at the beginning of the year set the tone for the entire year. From there, we continued to build on strengths and helped everyone belong to our learning space.

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