Saturday, February 4, 2012

CSDL 2012 - Linguistics and Bodily-Kinesthetic Intelligence

Linguistics and Bodily-Kinesthetic Intelligence.

All attendants to the course on Multiple Intelligences organized by Pilgrims at University of Kent, United Kingdom, last Summer, were to perform a final class project that we decided to call: MIMU (an acronym standing for either Multiple Intelligences Museum or simply My Musem). The  performance was meant to recreate each one of the seven intelligences in Gardner's theory in relation to applied linguistics and share our designed activities with the rest of attendants to other Pilgrim's courses -about three hundred students every two weeks.

So when our trainers gave us a formal explanation of our assignment, it triggered off the memory of a recent pub conversation about the Maori dance held before rugby matches which one of my colleagues had shown on stage in a school festival; and it occurred to me that we could rehearse and peform a simplified version of the dance as a warm-up, an energizing or ice-breaking activity.

My colleague -a history teacher in a bilingual program, current rugby coach and ex-semi-professional player- was puzzled at first, but eagerly accepted my suggestion and we had a ball with our museum visitors. It turns out,  the Programme Director used to practice rugby at school and he joined us in one of our dances while we were videotaped for promotion, so we were publically congratulated with all classmates performing our Maori dance.

One of the conversations with a primary school teacher and visitor of our bodily-kinesthetic work station was particularly interesting. We concluded that while kindergarden and primary school have unintendedly but effectively considered all five doors or entry points to convey meaning and content to students, including music, dancing, songs, games, etc...  that approach usually stops at secondary education. The whole experience has led me to collect all my bodily-kinesthetic activities in an attempt to share them with the rest of the teaching community, learn from everybody -which is the purpose of this presentation- and publish our activities and conclusions:

1. A web-quest to identify a set of Paleolithic and Neolithic venuses served the pupose of illustrating a different esthetic perspective of human and female representation to prevent anorexia and bulimia, then students used clay to recreate one venus of their own.

2. Newaza – Ground Techniques to link with a coursebook unit on extreme sports,

3. Massage – Giving each other a Rub to show trust and care for others,

4. Human Castles to link with a coursebook unit on traditions and customs,

5. a Karaoke session with choreography to memorize linguistic content.

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