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Speechless? Draw a comic. Tell a story.

During our team training in Berlin in November 2022, we talked a lot about linguistic insecurity.

Linguistic insecurity is the anxiety or lack of confidence someone feels about the way they speak or use language. They may feel that they don't speak as well or as correctly as others. Some people may feel this way because of their accent, the words they use or even their grammar mistakes. It often happens when there's a difference between the way they speak and what is considered the standard or 'correct' way to speak in their society or by certain groups. This feeling can make people less confident about speaking up or taking part in conversations.

Our group agreed that we all experience a lack of confidence at times. During the training we learnt how to reflect on these moments using drawings and especially comics. This can be very useful as part of self-reflection for language diaries. We were all given the task of telling our stories in 4 frames of the comic and sharing with the group what happens in our stories? Check out our beautiful and meaningful work!

If you are a trainer and would like to work more on the stories and get more reflections and discussions. Ask a group to look at their comics again.

Ask the participants to choose an instruction that best fits their story or that seems most interesting at the moment and ask the following questions::

If your story is about being overwhelmed by uncertainty, can you think of an alternative way to overcome it? What would you need at that moment to avoid being overwhelmed?

If your story is about successfully coping with uncertainty, can you identify what made this possible? Is it about resources, attitudes, support, tools that were available to you?

If there are additional characters, can you tell the story from their perspective? Does this change your perception of the situation?

Ask participants to share their alternative stories with the group. Have a look at one of the examples below, created using this resource You can also use this website to create many interesting stories with your participants.

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