Volume 21 Number 2 January 20, 2020

‘Seeing’ and ‘Being Seen’: An Embodied and Culturally Sensitive Arts-Integrated Pedagogy Creating Enriched Conditions for Learning in Multi-Cultural Schools

Charlotte Svendler Nielsen
University of Copenhagen, Denmark

Gerard M. Samuel
University of Cape Town, South Africa

Lisa Wilson
University of Cape Town, South Africa

Karen A. Vedel
University of Copenhagen, Denmark

Citation: Svendler Nielsen, C, Samuel, G.M., Wilson, L., & Vedel. K.A. (2020). ‘Seeing’ and ‘being seen’: An embodied and culturally sensitive arts-integrated pedagogy creating enriched conditions for learning in multi-cultural schools. International Journal of Education & the Arts, 21(2). Retrieved from http://doi.org/10.26209/ijea21n2.


This article explores the pedagogy developed for enriching conditions for learning among 10-11 year-old children in culturally diverse schools in Cape Town and Copenhagen in an artistic-educational project led by an intercultural group of artist-educators, teachers and researchers from Denmark and South Africa. The group created a workshop format in the cross-over between dance and visual arts focused on the theme of climate change, the elements of nature (water, air, earth and fire) and their importance in the southern and the northern hemispheres. Based on a hermeneutic phenomenological analysis (van Manen, 1990) that connects the children’s experiences and the artist-educators’ experiences of how learning became possible in different ways, it is argued that enriched conditions for learning can be fostered through integrating art forms (here dance and visual arts) and by tools that constitute an embodied and culturally sensitive pedagogy.

Visual Abstract

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