I have been using (and sharing) glyphs with adults and students for many years. I figure it is time to share the idea publicly. What is a glyph? According to the West Virginia Department of Education website, “A glyph is a symbol that conveys information nonverbally. Glyphs may be used in many ways to get to know more about students. They are extremely useful for students who do not possess the skill to write long, complex explanations. Reading a glyph and interpreting the information represented is a skill that requires deeper thinking. Students must be able to analyze the information presented in visual form.”

My extended definition: A glyph is also a collaborative activity that is fun to do with adults and students. An image of something (person, house, food, object, pumpkin, etc.) is created with data. The data is gathered from answering questions, and the answers to those questions are represented with pictures, colors, and/or symbols. Glyphs can be used with students, adults, employees, and managers in any organization.

This particular glyph was done with adults at the beginning of the school year, but the questions can be easily modified and customized to your needs. I want to especially thank Julio Crespo, an amazing artist, muralist, and teacher, for drawing this unisex kid for me several years ago. Why is the kid unisex? Because it allows an artist to use his or her imagination to create a unique person. For a FREE copy of the kid and glyph activity, click here.  

This activity is beyond fun, and it provides a teachable moment to acknowledge and embrace the similarities and differences of people/students in the room. Enough of my explaining, see the results and try it for yourself! 

Materials: crayons/color pencils, kid glyph, glyph instructions, stickers, and an imagination!
Please feel free to share your experience using this glyph or another one in the comments section. Cheers! – Acacia

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