Thirteen Ed Online
Lesson Plans
Who Am I? Exploring Identity
Overview Procedures for Teachers Organizers for Students

Who am I? In this lesson, students reflect on this question through discussion, writing and art. Students first define "identity" and consider who they are and what they value. Students then explore the work of two photographers featured on an upcoming episode of Thirteen/WNET New York's series EGG THE ARTS SHOW to see how they have dealt with the issue of identity. As a culminating activity, students respond to the question "Who am I?" using photography, paint, clay, or collage.

Grade Level:
High School

Time Allotment:
This lesson should take approximately five class periods of approximately 50-60 minutes.

Subject Matter:
Language Arts

This lesson was prepared with Maureen Carroll.

Learning Objectives

Students will be able to:
  • gain an understanding of a variety of means of expression of identity.
  • engage in research and self-exploratory writing activities.
  • explore the role of art in self-expression.
  • create a rendering of their own identity by using varied forms of expression.
  • gain insight into their own identity.


New York State Standards

Language Arts

STANDARD 3-Language for Critical Analysis and Evaluation -Commencement

Listening and reading to analyze and evaluate experiences, ideas, information, and issues requires using evaluative criteria from a variety of perspectives and recognizing the difference in evaluations based on different sets of criteria.

Speaking and writing for critical analysis and evaluation requires presenting opinions and judgments on experiences, ideas, information, and issues clearly, logically, and persuasively with reference to specific criteria on which the opinion or judgment is based.

STANDARD 1-Language for Information and Understanding-Commencement

Speaking and writing to acquire and transmit information requires asking probing and clarifying questions, interpreting information in one's own words, applying information from one context to another, and presenting the information and interpretation clearly, concisely, and comprehensibly.

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Students will make works of art that explore different kinds of subject matter, topics, themes and metaphors. Students will understand and use sensory elements, organizational principles, and expressive images to communicate their own ideas in works of art. Students will use a variety of art materials, processes, mediums, and techniques and use appropriate technologies for creating and exhibiting visual art works.
  • Students create a collection of art work, in a variety of mediums, based on instructional assignments and individual and collective experiences to explore perceptions, ideas, and viewpoints (a).
  • Students create art works in which they use and evaluate different kinds of mediums, subjects, themes, symbols, metaphors, and images (b).
  • Students demonstrate an increasing level of competence in using the elements and principles of art to create art works for public exhibition [c].

New Jersey Standards

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New Jersey State Standard 3.4: All students will read a variety of materials and texts with comprehension and critical analysis.


New Jersey State Standard 1.2: (Creation and Performance) All students will utilize those skills, media, methods and technologies appropriate to each form in the creation, performance and presentation of dance, music, theater, and visual art.

Connecticut State Standards

Language Arts

Content Standard 1: Students will read and respond in individual, literal, critical and evaluative ways to literary, informational and persuasive texts.

Performance Standard: Generate questions before, during and after reading, writing, listening and viewing. Students will ask and answer their own and each other's text-related critical and analytical questions.

Content Standard 2: Producing Texts Students will produce written, oral and visual texts to express, develop and substantiate ideas and experiences.

Performance Standard: Communicate effectively in descriptive, narrative and expository and persuasive modes. Students will identify and use effectively the salient features of all appropriate oral, visual and written discourse.

Visual Arts

Content Standard 1: Students will understand, select and apply media, techniques and processes

Performance Standard: Students will apply media, techniques and processes with sufficient skill, confidence and sensitivity that their intentions are understood.

Performance Standard: Conceive and create original works of art that demonstrate a connection between personal expression and the intentional use of art materials, techniques and processes.