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LEGO bricks, language and linguistic insecurity. Are we serious?

LANG@WORK training can never be boring. The team had the chance to unleash their creativity and get access to the LEGO bricks that we rarely get to share with our children. Our Italian partner ASNOR gave us this wonderful opportunity at the training in Berlin. We started playfully, but it got serious. We entered the field of LEGO Serious Play tools.

LEGO Serious Play is a fun and inventive way to tackle challenges and explore new concepts with the bricks. Instead of just talking about ideas or challenges, a group of people build models with LEGO bricks to represent their thoughts, stories or solutions to problems. This method helps people express themselves in a different and clearer way. It encourages everyone to participate and makes solving problems more fun and interesting. It's used in companies, schools and workshops to help teams work better together, generate new ideas and understand complicated concepts in a simple way. Why did we use LEGO? We used LEGO bricks to build models and tell stories. These structures are not random. They represent our thoughts and experiences in a way that makes sense through metaphor. It's like using LEGO to write a story without words. This method helps everyone communicate complex ideas in a simple and visual way. You might be surprised to learn that your hands can help your brain think better. Building with LEGO stimulates the mind and can lead to surprising discoveries and breakthroughs.

Each person built their own LEGO model in response to a question. This ensured that we saw different perspectives and ideas, making the discussion richer and more diverse.

After building, everyone shared the story of their model. This part is crucial. It's not just about what we built, but the story behind it. It helps everyone understand and connect with each other's ideas.

To make sure everyone could share and listen effectively, we spoke one at a time. This kept the conversation clear and focused.

Everyone had their own way of expressing themselves. We valued each model and the story it told, and focused our discussion on the models and what they represented, rather than on the person who made them. We worked together to create a collective creation by combining our individual models. This requires teamwork as we have to decide how to combine our ideas into one cohesive model. It's a great way to see how different perspectives can come together to create a unified solution.

We had a facilitator to make sure everything stayed on track. He was not there to tell us what to build, but to help us navigate through the process and make sure everyone got the most out of the experience.

We had a series of questions for this particular workshop that helped us to reflect on our own experiences with languages and communication:

  • You communicate in another language

  • You learning a language at your best

  • You and your colleague/friend in a cross-cultural context

  • A future successful international talent

  • Building a model with your peers using the best parts of each model

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