O’Plérou Grebet, a 22-year-old digital artist from the Ivory Coast, was recently in the news because he created his own emojis, reflecting life in contemporary West Africa. In an interview with CNN, he stated, "I noticed that media and most articles about Africa were talking about the bad sides of the continent only. They reduced the image of it to a land in war where people are poor and hungry. These elements are true but it's not everywhere on the continent."
This lesson provides an opportunity for students to learn about the history of emojis, reflect on why O’Plérou Grebet created this collection of emojis and then create their own emojis to convey something about their own identity.