Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin - bologna.lab

Statements of participants about the cooperation

Jennifer Govan, Teachers College, Columbia University

"Being a part of Teachers College-Humboldt University Lab “Cities and Diversity” is a unique educational experience – one that takes shape over time through a series of rich collaborations and partnerships. A new and open idea, Transformations of Text, grows into a medium for professional development that stretches my thinking about teaching in alternative contexts, as fruition comes to the Gottesman Libraries in various forms: an exhibition of artwork, workshop for our community school, guest talks, research resources, and an archival collection of materials. Our project explores encounters with visual art and shows how the aesthetic experience inspires narrative. We are looking at the ways in which children transform theory into writing and the significance of textual transformation using urban space (library and classroom) as the creative medium. The biggest challenges are coordinating technology, to support real and virtual participation, and scheduling, to accommodate international time differences. An important facet is positioning the ideas and lessons of the project within the wider theater of learning to enhance teaching and outreach."


Anna Grimm, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin

Jutta Zeitz
"I joined the International Student Research Lab shortly after the kick-off in New York. My research interest focuses on different forms and functions of mapping in Modern Children's and Youth Literature. Together with Jule, currently I am currently working on Reif Larsen's 'The Selected Works of T.S. Spivet' and ‘ onderstruck' by Brian Selznick. The Research Lab provides the opportunity to both work independently and collaboratively on a research topic. Furthermore, it is a chance to get involved in an international scientific community. The biggest challenge is to stay in touch despite of long distance and different time zones."




Susan Ruth Cohen-Small, Teachers College, Columbia University

"Meeting and collaborating with colleagues in the research lab has helped me to realize my research interests within the context of a larger community of educators. In our subgroup, Lab 3, which we called Transformations of Text, we examined examples of text and hidden narratives within the urban landscapes of Berlin and New York. Our bi-weekly discussions led me to examine new ideas about how students and artists transform visual images into text and back again. Two projects were an outgrowth of my work with Martin Kroetz and Jennifer Govan in the research lab: My art exhibition in the Teachers College Gottesman Libraries Offit Gallery, in which I presented the many ways that I transform text in my artworks; and a teaching workshop in which I demonstrated the classroom applications of my Colorsong poem and artwork, with participating 2nd grade students of the Teachers College Community School. The collaborative environment of the research lab has enabled me to see how my work as an artist, as an educator and as a researcher, all converge into a unified discipline." 

Jule Ratajczak, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin

"Participating in research allows me to explore new ideas and to create own interests. The visit to New York in June 2014 was a wonderful platform to network, share and develop a research topic. Moreover, working in a team is nothing but beneficial to me: Especially by exchanging with Anna, with whom I work together on 'Mapping in Children's and Youth Literature' I engage in a lot of critical thinking and writing on a level that I otherwise would not engage in. 
Due to the time difference, our changing membership and technology problems, the collaboration with our fellows in New York is sometimes a challenge. Perhaps in the future, we will find a better way to communicate so that we do not have to worry about problems that might occur.”