Building Relationships: Would You Be Described As...Survey

Need a mid-week, get-to-know-you activity to fuel your daily and weekly plans? If so, give Would You Be Described As… a try.


  1. Give students a copy of the Would You Be Described As…template.

  2. Explain that students should read each pair and circle the word that best describes them and why.

  3. Remind students that they don’t have to write a reason why for every response, only if they choose.

  4. Think about whether there are any vocabulary words on the page that students may not know or understand. If so, teach into those words by explaining what they mean.

  5. To lift the learning across the classroom, share a few ideas from your survey [that you fill out ahead of time] with the whole class. This gives students an opportunity to get to know you AND serves as a model for how the survey answers can be shared.

  6. Give students 5-10 minutes to jot down their answers.

  7. Give students an opportunity to share their survey answers with others. Break students into small groups — pairs or groups of 3 or 4.

  8. As students share, listen in [or kidwatch] so that you get to know students as they are getting to know their peers.

  9. Collect the surveys and sort them. Look for commonalities that emerge. For example:

    • Who considers themselves messy? Tidy?

    • Who considers themselves as leaders? Followers?

  10. Consider using the survey results as entry points for student learning such as:

    • Students gaining an awareness and appreciation for one another.

    • Graphing and analyzing the survey results with students and co-constructing how knowing these things about one another can help the learning community thrive.

    • Taking a closer look at students’ WHY statements [where applicable] and using that intel to design learning. For example, if a student says that they circled city dog because they’ve never been to the countryside, consider curating some books, stories, maps, etc. about life in the country.

Reminder: If you don’t like some of the word pairings, revise to fit the needs and interests of your students.


  • If you are an Administrator or Instructional Coach—this works for building relationships with and among colleagues, too. This is great for PLC’s, Team Meetings, Staff Meetings, PD/Workshops, etc.