KottiBuch . Project Report

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03KottiBuch is an educational project, aiming to build bridges between two cultures: Orient and Occident. One of its definitive goals has been for ways to design suitable pedagogic materials and services as well as to draw on teaching/learning methods which may serve best to illustrate the notion of an Orient-Occident intercultural dialogue for future school-exchange programs within German Schools and between them and those of the countries of the Orient.

In this framework and according to an agreement between Evangelische Schule Berlin Zentrum (ESBZ) and OHWB e.V., an initial pilot project was defined, conceptualized and implemented in ESBZ for a period of 10 weeks.

The principal method employed was the concept of Design Thinking: An iterative and innovative method with a human-centered approach, which centers around school children working together in teams, in order to gain empathy with the target group, to interview and better observe them, define a point of view, develop ideas and build tangible prototypes accordingly as well as then to test the prototypes in practice, if and when they fit the real or hidden needs of the target group.

The pupils were split into four groups and each of the groups faced different challenges:

  1. Design a way in which the migrants in Berlin would feel more welcome, especially in a world in which their cultural differences are mostly being ignored or not considered in the German bureaucratic system.
  2. Design a way for which German and Turkish youth can enjoy better friendships, particularly in a society in which cultural prejudgments are playing an important role.
  3. Design a way for Germans who are willing to travel to India in order to gain an authentic understanding of what awaits them in such a culturally diverse country.
  4. Design a way to help Arabs in Berlin who have been affected by the Arab Spring and are tested to find their placing in the new world and assist them to better convey their cultural identity and assets to respective residents in Germany.

After introducing the challenges, the groups started to understand the challenge by undertaking short investigations in form of online research and consulted fellow school mates with migration background to help them with that. They then prepared their respective interview questions and searched for possible interview locations such as Berlin Wedding, Kreuzberg and Neukölln and interviewed the Bio Germans and Germans with migration background as well as refugees. Based on the results of the interviews, they defined a point of view, according to which they developed a fictitious persona. Afterwards, they worked in conceptualizing ideas which could solve the problem of that persona. In order to visualize the idea, they developed prototypes and finally tested the prototypes with their target group and iterated the prototype again. At the end, they presented the results in front of the whole school.

More Information & Details on: KottiBuch Website