Make sure you give students a few different ways to tell you about themselves. Some learners can easily write a paragraph or talk to the class about their likes, dislikes, interests, needs, and gifts. Others, may feel need a little support to do so. You might want to let students work in partners before they share with the entire class or you could let them choose how to introduce themselves (e.g., with a drawing, with a poem).
One method that is accessible for all students is to give them a paper bag or shoe box to fill with items that tell their story. While all-about-me bags may seem like a strategy that works best for young children, it can also be a powerful way to get to know students in middle school and high school. If you want to take a shortcut or “hack” and finish your gathering and sharing in a single day, challenge students to fill just a small paper cup and to gather items only from their pockets, desks, binders and lockers.