This is a great icebreaker to use during that first week of high school when schedules are changing, students are moving in and out of your class, and you don't want to start the core curriculum just yet.
Students write a two-minute speech about themselves and present it to the class with a visual aid.
I started using this activity last year, and it worked very well. It provides an engaging activity for students in which they write about their favorite topic: themselves. It takes about four 50-minute class periods to prepare and then about two more periods to deliver their speeches.
This is a very successful strategy for helping build strong classroom relationships. I was pleasantly surprised at how sensitive and supportive students were to each other during their presentations.
For the teacher, this activity provides a student writing sample and invaluable information about your students' families, interests, and struggles.