- A teacher has gone viral for using DIY meme stickers to grade exams.
- Ainee Fatima told INSIDER that she just started using the stickers this week, but she’s had the idea for a while.
- Fatima said her students loved the stickers.
- She teaches media studies, so the memes were especially relevant.
Sometimes, it can feel like teens are speaking another language. So instead of trying to fight it, one high school English and media studies teacher decided to try getting on her students’ level by using memes to grade exams.
On Wednesday, Ainee Fatima, a 27-year-old English and media studies teacher based out of Franklin Park, Illinois, shared a video of herself using her meme stickers to grade exams on Twitter – and people loved it. In just over a day, her post went viral.
I love grading with my new stickers! pic.twitter.com/4K66qQblSJ
— aineef (@axfxq) October 17, 2018
“I love grading with my new stickers!” she wrote. In a follow-up post, Fatima explained that she makes the stickers herself and shared the template.
I can no longer send this through DM, I hit some weird limit! Here's the link to it :) Enjoy fellow teachers! Here u go! https://t.co/Ad3ImXaQIV
— aineef (@axfxq) October 18, 2018
Fatima told INSIDER she made the stickers on the spur of the moment, although she’d been considering it for a while, as her 12th-grade students love memes.
“I was grading exams [on Wednesday] and started to get really frustrated at the answers my students were writing down, I thought ‘I wish they could see my face right now,'” she said. “So I had sticker paper handy, made a quick template on the computer with Confused Nick Young’s face and some positive Gordon Ramsay memes and printed them out!”
Don't worry, I did positive memes too! ???? pic.twitter.com/rTfHCGKQwJ
— aineef (@axfxq) October 18, 2018
Fatima said that she wanted the memes to encourage learning and help erase the stigma that comes with a getting a bad grade on a test. She was happy to see that in action when she passed the graded exams back.
“I didn’t print enough so not every wrong answer got a sticker so the students who did not receive a sticker for a wrong answer were actually asking if they could get one. It made them look at their exam and actually ask me to correct their answers for some credit,” she said. “This is what I wanted!”
Online, people love the teacher’s creativity.
If I ever get a class with older students I’m doing this. Great strategy to connect with students and do your job!
— Anthony S. Hughes (@shodamolaJR) October 18, 2018
this upcoming generation don’t know how lucky they are to have lit ass millennials as teachers lol https://t.co/qKdWQ7tqlP
— james (@phan1om_) October 18, 2018
This is going to help students learn. They pay way too close attention to what’s going on in them phones to ignore meme stickers. Good stuff IMO https://t.co/CvCK6oknnF
— Mr. RussB (@MrRussB) October 18, 2018
LMAOOOOO I WISH I GRADED BY HAND ID TOTALLY DO THIS
— Marissa Daily, M.A. (@MarissaDaily_) October 18, 2018
Create a classroom culture that resonates with students and excellence shows itself. https://t.co/U0qdlS5ndI
— Laiza | “Lay-sa” (@lzixxaa) October 18, 2018
Others are sharing how they use pop culture and memes in their classrooms.
Hi! I love your idea! I used the Cardi B meme for my hallpasses and my kids loved it. Could I also have your template ????
— . (@adiammm) October 18, 2018
Love it!!! I’m a 12th grade counselor and this is the sign on my door lol. The kids love it and it’s a great way to connect with them. Also it’s probably more for my own entertainment than theirs hahaha. pic.twitter.com/9qiOfRCQTB
— Rose ????????????♀️ (@mami_rose) October 18, 2018
@daddydaniel28 literally made these a couple weeks ago and now 3 people have shown me this today ???????????? pic.twitter.com/FCCIY1lWg6
— Mrs. Tabeche (@MTabeche) October 18, 2018
I’ve always used memes in the classroom (above the whiteboard). It keeps students interested and yes, I also sold pop, juice, water, Gatorades and teas for my yearbook fundraiser. #CoolTeacher ???? pic.twitter.com/yazoWzWfj5
— Angélica García, M.A. Ed. (@MrzTeacherLady) October 18, 2018
Fatima said she doesn’t know of other teachers at her school who incorporate pop culture or media into the classroom like this. But since she teaches Media Studies English she says this experience has been an interesting case study “about the power of viral media.”
A new teacher this year, Fatima said this whole experience has been validating. She’s had an outpouring of support from her fellow teachers and she said her students are “super stoked to have a ‘famous’ teacher.”
But at the end of the day, she just hopes she’s making a difference. “Including pop culture and media in their curriculum will get your content and instruction across way farther than sticking to age-old content,” she said. “It might seem silly but just having those few kids try a little harder, made my day! I have striven to be the teacher I needed when I was in school.”
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