Aesthetic Literacy

This lesson parallels a workshop conducted in Helsinki in 2015 designed to help teachers and students make use of open space (physical, digital, and hybrid spaces encountered in the everyday) for learning. Specifically, it looks to do the following:

  • Make use of open space & enact lifelong learning systematically
  • Emphasize process over output
  • Stimulate learners to be self- organized and self- sufficient in their learning

It draws on the following resources:

We encourage students to perform activities before diving in to the slides to acclimate themselves to this manner of learning. We created the following four activities.

  1. Perceptual (visual, aural) mapping of one´s personal life space. Texts can be used to support the clarity of the presentation.
    1. The life space means the everyday space (or spaces) of home, work and/or other beings and doings, in which everyone lives daily or for a certain period. This personal life space is a possible open space, which includes learning, but is not (yet) “crystallized” as an intentional learning space. Mapping this place signifies the localising of this life space into a “terrain”
    2. Mapping in this instance refers to several methods: drawing a representation of this space by hand or by adding select photographs. It can also involve the use of some digital tools like Google maps.
    3. Images, sounds, videos, texts and other materials depicting the life space are connected with the map. The life space can be presented even with just one photograph.
    4. We (Pekka and Michael) recommend using Padlet ( for mapping, because it is easy to transfer or share these maps for further activity. If you want to use another tool, please go for it.
    5. We are attaching two examples of this activity:
  2. Naming of personal learning theme (or themes).  They can be titles as simple as “open data”, “reification of beauty”, “connection of brain activity and artificial intelligence”, “Japanese garden”, “urban history” etc. Once you have finished, please post your theme to the PoS site at the perceptual mapping forum.
  3. Familiarize yourself with the terminology of aesthetic literacy (see Glossary), and add a comment, question and/or further refinement connected with the terminology at the terminology forum.
  4. Production of flashes of perceptual sensitivity and behavioural rhetorics.
    1. participants´ pictorial, aural, textual, and multimedia interpretations about aesthetic literacy terms of alignment and attunement,
    2. search from the Glossary definitions for perceptual sensitivity and behavioural rhetorics, and create for them your own perceptual and/or multimedia artefacts (image, video, audio etc.),
    3. Share the urls of the artefacts on the PoS forum.
    4. Tag them as follows: perceiving onwards=”on”, perceiving backwards=”back”,      perceiving by=”by”, anticipatory empty=”empty”, emotional openness=”emotion”  and bodily vigilance=”vigilance”.

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