How do you reflect through your body?
This was the question posed by Rajesh Patel in response to provocations offered in this session run by Rebecca Patterson and Alison Ramsay. Becky and Alison shared their thinking and teaching practice with drama and primary ITE students. Whilst reflection is a key part of the ITE programme, more critical thinking is needed about what it means to reflect.
“We are constantly asking trainee teachers to do new things. And then to reflect on it. It can become mechanistic, or a box ticking exercise. If we reflected through our bodies, rather than just through words, might this offer a new way of doing this difficult thing called reflection?” Becky Patterson
Through a series of drama and movement exercises, we explored the notion of ‘beyond written feedback’. Instead of trying to express (rationalise?) our experiences in words, we reflected through doing, moving and making living sculptures.
Our bodily responses, and particularly our breath, were vital in holding us as a group, collectively and in the present, during these exercises. What came across most strongly was the way in which reflection can become collective and collaborative, rather than individual and isolated.