lunedì 30 giugno 2014

Literacy, Art, dance, creativity and play activities

I had interesting and good experiences as an educator, trainer and but also as a learner, that I would like to share with you, they are so many and i have to much to say about each one, that I really can't do it, so, I'll select a few that I maybe can be usefull for your own contexts and do a hard sinteses. Dance and literacy are rarely together, but as dance is one of my passions, I try to develop activities on this field and I was lucky to work with choreographers that used as base input poetry, stories and writting activities.

Experiences as LEARNER:

Italian for Foreigners

I had a very good experience on Officina Creativa Interculturalle as a student of Italian for foreigners mainly because they were flexible, sensitive and understandive enough towards the situation of being a foreigner. Our fears, needs, expectations, dreams, particularities and isolation situation, where included as part of the lesson and used as theme for learn italian language. Independent of all ages, cultures, life situations, italian level, we will always start and finish with a simple activity together, which help us to connect with each other, that shared the some common strugle.

The strongest point of this experience was the hosting, the enviorment of open arms, listening, looking, mediator of diferent cultures and gather promotion, and the creative, personal and non formal education methodologies.

The weakest point of this experience was the dificulty to adjust the diferent levels of italian, assure the continuity of evolution between classes, lack of evaluation moments for exchange feedbacks and the certificate of learning that is recognized.

Story Telling Course

On this course we were learning how to tell a story and all the process behind it, that mades each story teller different from another and the same story being told diferently as we put so much of our sensitivity and non verbal language inside but underline. But while we were learning we were listening each others stories repeatly and surprisly I wanted to hear it more and more which made understand how much we connect through these activities.

The strongest point of this experience the quality of the teacher's listening and feedback that made us improve and get more and more to our own style of storytellers.

The weakest point of this experience was that we could only choose the tales we would work.

Dance in community workshop, and course

In this workshop I learn how to connect to many different inputs with dance, from video, stories, choreographies. One example: with the theme weather, from a video of clouds movement drawing without look at the paper, selecting from all those lines shapes, write a story about it, tell it, and then dance it, while some of us do the music for it.

From the children's book of Jutta Bauer's “Screaming mother”, we plan a serie of multicultural dance classes, as the pieces of the penguin went to different part of the world, and we will rescuing his body parts focus the movement atention on those through the diverse local traditional dances.

Research and Dance Composition workshop

From the portuguese poetry of the book of Casimiro de Brito called “Where the body Ends” I learned how to work books both text through movement and dance composition in relation with the architeture of a public space.

Experiences as a TEACHER/TRAINNER:

Multiculturality through Dance workshop

I develop this workshop connecting the body expression with cultural inputs like traditional musics, enviornment, objects, ideas, symbols, history references from participants and common sense knowledge.

The activity was part outdoors so we use as input the architeture and the diversity of the space relating them with the world cultures.

The strong point was the diversity of inputs as impulse to movement, as it could suit the diversity of participants and the possibility to present how to work the diferent aspects of body movement and expression.

The weak point was find the coherence between the complex diversity and reach participants level of understanding.

Portuguese Culture Events

I organized portuguese culture events about literature, music and some particular places as city of porto. The idea is to present, to promote, to enchant, to enthusiast people about it and mainly connect them with a diferent, distant and foreign people and culture.

It was a challenge to get people interested on a language that though very close to italian it wasn't their own.

The strong point of these events were using the interactive art instalation and pathways methodology to present portuguese literature work very well to get people more active on their knowledge exploration and free to explore acording with their own interest.

The weak point of this events was that participants were a bit lost because there were not enough prepared guides and maybe not enough guide lines for the amount of things to explore since that the interactive and active experience is something that adults are not used to and are not expecting on a


Multicultural events

On these events adults were gather to find a meeting of at least two cultures about a theme that would be explored according with these cultures in order to promote a bigger intercultural dialogue on the cultural events and take advantage to involved local foreigners to teach us about their culture.

It was organized one about mythology (with Portugal, Germany, Greece and Holland) and one about Food (with Greece, Portugal and Hungary).

The strong point of these events were the surprising ability to enjoy the process of the activities proposed and the pleasure to find a place where they could connect with strangers through activities different from daily and with culture as mediator.

The weak point was that it was hard to involved them on the reflect process of those activities as they associate event and non formal education activities as a moment to enjoy the company of each other and have fun as priority and as a secondary level learn something and even less to be aware of it.

Workshop of book building “The Book that it isn't”

In this workshop adults, children and persons of all ages were invited to create a book never seen before from waste materials. It had to had a cover where the title, author, date, place and promotor (editor) would be placed, and then its content with some way of organize the pages with story content. The books where placed in the Library together with normal book, with a poster explaining what were they about and a basket with ideas for inviting readers to build at home more of these books, for a month.

The strong point of this activity was a great way to make understand what is behind the process of a book, the creativity required to it's building and the intime and afective connection created by build and sign the book made as the author.

The weekest point of this activity was the small community impact that it had.

English for children through literacy and play activity methodologies

One of the most effective ways to learn to speak and understand a language is the need and the enjoyment of use it.

On the children's English classes I  worked teaching english and literacy through songs, nursery rhymes sculptures, puppet theatre and theatre, dramatic expression, story telling, outdoor traditional games (that included verbalizing english sentences) were included. Besides that one of the biggest focus of my work was the play activities recreating literacy contexts such as: restaurants, supermarket, teddy bear hospitals, pretending travel experience, travel agency, shopping centre and the shops street and hotels. Finally we develop works about stories like art instalations and workshops of building their own books or of English vocabulary (to add to library school). 

The strong point of this classes were that the enjoyment of the kids, how much they learn in paralel about multiculturality and how to play.

The weak point of this project was that it was hard to explain all that was required to understand to develop this activities in english, specially because their if their capacity of attention would be finish after the explanation then to play in english it was hard.

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