In A Manner Of Speaking - First Language Presentations
In art schools in the Netherlands, we educate more and more non-Dutch students, both as Erasmus students and as regular students. We teach them in our version of English (often ‘Globish’: the simplified global version of English) and they present also in that way.
Because identity is in part manifested in/through language, the question is whether we then coach and assess the student on his or her true strengths.
'In A Manner Of Speaking - First Language presentations' is an educational setting, a group experience, in which students with different backgrounds talk to each other (and a few teachers) about their work in their first language.
The educational setting is first of all a place to feel free to speak out. It can take place in the group studio. It cannot be an assessment.
Each person who wants, talks about work / process / progress - in their first language.
Every presentation takes about 8-10 minutes maximum (or whatever feels right for all, not too long).
Of course the rest of people present probably do not get the verbal presentations, but it is fine not to under-stand (Rancière).
In response, all people present make notes in a sign system they invent / experiment with for this purpose. Every person who has presented, receives the notes afterwards.
The notes are a method to focus during the listening. The real aim of the presentations is the attention given, and the form of self-awareness and strength that arises.
Contexts: 3rd year (regular & Erasmus) students at WdKA Rotterdam, and at ELIA Teachers' Academy May 2015, to be continued. Some (first) responses: