Be Counted

“Frustration is fuel that can lead to the development of an innovative and useful idea.” Marley Dias, @IAmMarleyDIas #1000BlackBooks


NOTE: This game is best suited for an open space, like a gym, where children/youth have freedom to move.

Understanding our similarities and appreciating our differences plays a major role in creating and celebrating a culture of diversity and inclusion. Helping children to see what they share in common helps to breakdown stereotypes and prejudices.

Who wants to join me and play a game? In this game, we’re going to learn more about each other and hopefully ourselves. To play this game, you all need to listen carefully, and if and when it’s time to move you need to do so safely.


I’m going to read a sentence. If you agree with that sentence, then you need to cross to the other side of the room, where we’ll count all of you. Then, everyone stays where they are and I’ll read another sentence. If you agree and haven’t crossed, you go join the others. If you agree and you are already across, you stay. And if you don’t agree you stand with me. Again, I’ll count everyone. And then we’ll keep going. Do you understand? Are you ready? OK, let’s go.

  1. I go to school.
  2. I am a girl.
  3. I have at least one brother or sister.
  4. I have at least one cat.
  5. I have my own bedroom.
  6. I celebrate Christmas.
  7. I can ride a bike.
  8. I am a boy.
  9. My birthday is in the summer.
  10. I live with my mom.
  11. I celebrate Hanukkah.
  12. I can speak another language (other than English).
  13. I have flown on an airplane.
  14. At least one of my parents was born in another country.
  15. I celebrate Ramadan.
  16. I play soccer.
  17. I play a musical instrument.
  18. I am a vegetarian (don’t eat meat).
  19. I am Muslim.
  20. I like to eat popcorn.
  21. I am afraid of spiders.
  22. I have family that lives in a different country.
  23. My grandma and/or grandpa lives with us.
  24. My birthday is in the winter.
  25. I speak a different language at home.
  26. My favourite colour is blue.
  27. I like to eat samosas.
  28. I like to read.
  29. I like to swim.
  30. I have eaten dinner in a restaurant.

<Optional BREAK End of Day 1>

(If a day break quickly, reflect back on the activity.)

Now we’re going to look at all our numbers together. (Work through the questions and the numbers. Do some simple math problems with the kids looking at how many of them are represented in each question - can do simple how much counting activities too.)

<Optional BREAK End of Day 2>


(If a day break, quickly reflect back on where you are at as a group.)

  1. What did it feel like to be counted in a group?
  2. What did it feel like if your friends were in one group and you were in another?
  3. How would you invite someone into your group?
  4. How does this make you feel? (prompts: left out? sad? lonely?) Did you ever not want to join a group?
  5. Reflecting on the responses from your friends, what was an “aha” moment for you?
  6. What was something new that you learned about your friends?

<Optional BREAK End of Day 3>


(If a day break, review where you’re at as a group in the activity.)

A lot of times, we don’t know how we are the same or different from our friends, neighbours or strangers in the street. There are so many things that make each of us who we are. There’s only one me. There’s only one you. But, as this activity showed us, we also share a lot of things in common.

What are some things we learned today? (make a list)

Now that we know these things, how can we stand up beside our friends and neighbours? (make a list)

Turn list into a commitment/pledge and have the students sign it and hang it in the classroom

Some inspiration:
  • We pledge to accept and celebrate the things that make us the same and unique…
  • We promise to support and encourage our friends when they feel alone...
  • We promise to learn more about each other, to ask questions if we don’t understand something and to not make fun of what makes us different…
  • In this classroom we celebrate all that makes us unique…
  • We will stand up to those who are mean…

*Adapted from RaceBridges Studio’s “Claim It! Creating Inclusion”

Victoria Ford

Victoria thinks the world could do with a lot more heart. Her goal? To encourage others to stand up, speak out and push back against hatred.


Understanding our similarities and appreciating our differences plays a major role in creating and celebrating a culture of diversity and inclusion.