Half Girl, Half Face Workshop Facilitator’s Guide

A Social Networking Workshop for Girls in Grades 7-9

This guide is designed to provide support to teachers,youth and community leaders when facilitating the Half Girl, Half Face workshop for girls.

The Half Girl, Half Face workshop looks at many of the issues teenage girls in grades 7-9 may encounter when they use digital media – particularly social networks. According to MediaSmarts’ 2014 Young Canadians in a Wired World study, reading and posting on social networks are favourite online activities for most Canadian youth: 82 percent of students in grades 7-11 have Facebook accounts and just under half have Twitter and Instagram accounts. This is especially true for girls, who are more likely than boys to use social media to communicate with family and friends. 

All of this online socializing brings with it a wide range of opportunities and challenges. The workshop is designed to give girls a chance to discuss and reflect on their online experiences and those of their peers and to think about ways they can ensure that their online interactions are positive for them and others.

The video Half Girl, Half Face is based on a fringe festival play by the same name that was written by Zoë Erwin-Longstaff. In the video a teenage girl discovers that a very ordinary image of her face, cropped from a photo that was posted online of her and a friend at a party, has gone viral and become a “meme.” As her image is appropriated by people she knows and doesn’t know, she shares her anger, frustration and confusion through an online  video in which she tries to explain to friends and haters alike how this experience has affected her.