This sample agenda can be used and adapted for a GSA meeting that has more of an educational focus. Download it here.
Introductions and icebreaker question (5 minutes)
It’s important to start out every GSA meeting with introductions, even if the same students are coming to every meeting. Students’ preferred names and pronouns might change, and it’s good to allow space for students to re-introduce themselves.
“My name is Jordyn, I’m in 7th grade, and my pronouns are she and her.” “My name is Mr. Johnson, I am one of the advisors, and I use he and him.”
“I’m Kai, I’m an 8th grader, and for today’s meeting I’d like to use they/them/theirs.”
Reminder: Asking students to share their preferred pronouns is not the same as asking students to share their sexual orientation or gender identity. For more information on pronoun usage, check out the “Pronouns Matter” resource on the GSAFE website.
You may also want to add a quick icebreaker question to the introductions.
“If you could describe your mood today with a color, what color would you be?” “If you could have any superpower, what would it be and why?”
“If you had to eat only one food for the rest of your life, what would you eat?”
WE AGREE TO:
Respect confidentiality Listen when others are talking Be respectful of one another
Be open to new ideas Help one another learn Make space for everyone Have fun!
Group Agreements (5-10 minutes)
All clubs should have group agreements, as they help establish expectations for how the members will be interacting with one another in the space.
Work with the students to create group agreements and revisit them often. If students feel ownership over the group agreements, it is easier to hold them accountable to them.
Reminder: When it comes to confidentiality, you should let students know what your responsibility is as a mandatory reporter.
Topic Brainstorm (10 minutes)
You probably don’t have to do this at every meeting, but if your GSA is going to have an educational focus, you might want to build time into the meetings early in the year or at the start of the semester to come up with a list of topics the students would like to learn about.
Suggestions to help this process move along:
- Remind the students that this is just a brainstorm, not a finalized Create space for all ideas to be good ideas. You can edit the list later.
- Make sure that everyone has had a chance to share an idea for a topic that they might want to learn about. You may want to go around in a circle and have everyone share at least one idea before students can share a second or third
- Have a student or two volunteer to write all the suggested topics on a whiteboard or big piece of paper so everyone can see the whole list.
Once the list has been generated, take some time identifying who will be responsible for each topic. Students can volunteer to spend time outside of the GSA meeting researching their topic and plan to share back what they have learned. Additionally, students can suggest ideas for outside presenters they know to come and present.
Create a calendar for when the topics will be presented, and check in with students and remind them that their date is coming up.
Learn! (30 minutes)
The bulk of the meeting should be spent on the actual learning topic. If a student or pair of students will be the ones presenting, you will probably need to spend some time with them outside of GSA helping them prepare. Their presentation could have lots of different formats: They could create a Prezi, lead an activity, create a game, watch a movie or video clips, or they could simply prepare some facilitation questions on the topic and lead a discussion.
For a sample activity, check out the “Pronoun Practice” resource on GSAFE’s website.
Appreciations (5-10 minutes)
At the end of the meeting, it’s important to build in time for students to share what they appreciated about the presentation, or what they learned. Give each student a chance to share a sentence about what they’ll take away.
“I really appreciated learning about all the different gender neutral pronouns.” “I learned that you can’t tell what someone’s pronouns are by looking at them.” “I appreciated that your presentation was interactive and we got to talk.”
Created by Elliot Feria and Tim Michael for GSAFE