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'If you could change one thing to create a better world - what innovation would that be?' 

We asked this question during the opening of TEDxBinnenhof.

And invited the audience at the Ridderzaal and ambassees  from all corners of the world watching via live stream to sent us their ideas. 

One huge brainstorm! 
Check the video to see some of the ideas!


 
 
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Phoetry Project, samensmelten van disciplines alsof het nooit anders is geweest.

In opdracht van Click F1 en Carthesius Lyceum hebben de PJs samen met fotograaf Isabel Nabuurs een korte workshop Phoetry bedacht en gegeven. 

Hiermee ging een langgekoesterde wens van de PJs in vervulling om 2 disciplines; beeld (Photography) en taal (Poetry) samen te smelten.

Iedere discipline mocht op 2 momenten met een groep jongeren aan de slag. Wij hebben in totaal met 2 groepen gewerkt waarvan de ene groep beeld en de andere taal als vertrekpunt nam.

Studenten van de opleiding docent Beeldende Vorming van de AHK liepen stage bij onze lessen.
Tijdens een van de lessen van de Poetry Jockeys hebben zij gebruik gemaakt van de Creative Kit van PJ Martijn om de les te illustreren. 

De Phoetry werken van de leerlingen en illustraties van de stagiares kan je hieronder terugzien.


 
 
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Van klein tot groot we nemen erg veel informatie tot ons.
Sneller dan ooit tevoren en via meer kanalen dan ooit te voren.

Het blijft bijzonder om te zien wat er gebeurt als je in de constante spits van de informatie snelweg eens de afslag richting weiland neemt, even stilstaat om te ontdekken wat je wilt benoemen en vervolgens te delen.

Laat het gaan over iets waar jij van droomt, in geloofd, waar je voor staat. energie van krijgt, boos of vrolijk van wordt.


Je zal ontdekken dat er anderen zijn die uit  jouw verhaal (h)erkenning, inspiratie krijgen of  vragen hebben of geloof vinden. Ongeacht leeftijd of afkomst van de deelnemers zien wij deze wonderlijke magie telkens weer terug in onze workshops.
Enne ff zonder beeldscherm....gewoon met pen en papier....


Zoals de video van Amnesty hieronder al zegt en haar aandacht vraagt  'Words can do anything'!

 
 
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Writing things down, with your actual hands, is just plain better at getting you to remember and execute good ideas." 
says the Fastcompany article.

Some interesting benefits according to the article:

"Dr. Sian Beilock’s book Choke: What the Secrets of the Brain Reveal About Getting it Right When You Have To, explores the many, many ways that the most talented people can set themselves up for huge failures at crucial moments. One thing that reliably helped very smart students with major test anxiety was writing about their anxieties to "off-load" them. And that was very specifically noted as "writing." In general, ask a whole bunch of geeks where they write down their thoughts and feelings, and you might be surprised at how many choose pen and paper."

Virginia Berninger, professor of educational psychology at the University of Washington, has the brain scans to prove it. Berninger told the Wall Street Journal in Oct. 2010 that as your hand executes each stroke of each letter, it activates a much larger portion of the brain’s thinking, language, and "working memory" regions than typing, which whisks your attention along at a more letters-and-words pace.


If you are interested to read more about the benefits of expresive writingwhat the PJs can do for you or your organisation:

Read the complete article in Fastcompany here
Research and articles about expressive writing here
About our expressive writing workshops here

 
 
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Onlangs werden de PJ's benaderd door een organisatie die al een aantal jaar een turbulente tijd doormaakt.
Door wijzigingen in het management en een fusie is de interne spanning hoog en het (zelf)vertrouwen van de medewerkers gedaald.   

Het recentelijk aangestelde hoofd heeft zich ten doel gesteld om deze energie om te buigen door de mens, medewerker, centraal te stellen. 
Om vanuit hernieuwde kracht, het vertrouwen te herwinnen, gezamenlijke koers te zetten op uitvoering. 

De Poetry Jockeys staken in met een van hun toegankelijke workshops.
Op locatie bij de opdrachtgever hebben de PJ's aan de medewerkers (management tot stagiair) gevraagd om een 
persoonlijke gebeurtenis die van grote invloed is geweest op hun huidige leven (Life Changing Story) op te schrijven
met pen en papier. 

Het resultaat: 
Binnen 3 uur en nog op tijd voor de lunch zijn 20 inspirerende persoonlijke verhalen geschreven en onderling gedeeld
in een veilige omgeving.
Heeft een grote meerderheid van de deelnemers aangegeven dat het hen dichter bij elkaar heeft gebracht,  
waardoor er een basis is gelegd om samen de toekomst in te gaan. De PJ missie is geslaagd!

Enige feedforward van de deelnemers:
"Er was nu een openheid naar elkaar toe die er wellicht in het dagelijkse contact niet snel zou zijn geweest"

"Het is leuk om te merken dat in feite een simpele opdracht een dergelijk positief effect kan hebben"

Doel van de workshop was heel duidelijk: "Wij zijn net mensen" en zo blijven wij. Vanaf nu bestaat de mogelijkheid 
om een nieuwe manier te vinden om met elkaar te omgaan."

"Omdat je weer even stilstaat bij de mens achter de functie. Verder ben je bezig met wat voor anderen een verhaal zou 
kunnen zijn, waar iets positiefs uit te halen is en dat is goed voor de geest. Dit versoepeld de benaderbaarheid van 
collega's in de samenwerking."

Over de PJ workshops voor organisaties:
Door de waan van de dag staat de gemiddelde mens steeds minder vaak stil bij zijn gevoel. 
Dat is spijtig want juist dit gevoel is een belangrijke motor als het gaat om het effectief inzetten van communicatie.
Hoe beter iemand in staat is om zijn gevoelens te verwoorden naar anderen toe, hoe beter de uitwerking zal zijn op
het terrein van saamhorigheid, vertrouwen en veilig samenwerken.

PJ's denken graag mee met organisaties in het verbeteren van communicatie. 
Dit doen wij door middel van expressief schrijven waarin gevoel, gedachte, droom, mening of vraag wordt gedeeld.

Poetry Jockeys, Woorden Onthullen Werelden

 
 
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PJs zijn gevraagd een theater voorstelling te maken voor scholen in Amsterdam.

Naast performance en workshop zijn de PJs vanaf volgend seizoen ook live te beleven op het podium.

Zeer vereerd en met gepaste trots zullen wij ons credo van "Woorden Onthullen Werelden" verder verspreiden. Keep you posted!

 
 
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During the past weeks the PJs gave several workshops at elementary schools in Amsterdam West. At one of these schools the classroom felt like a jungle. Teacher, Teun,  was a late 50's male (one of the very few left in Amsterdam). who had his class filled with stuffed animals, from a fox to birds. There were life fish, animal skulls bones and many plants.
On the blackbord (non-digital) we noticed an eagle, beautifully drawn in chalk. With all the digitization in classrooms nowadays it felt like being thrown back to our own childhood.

After this very refreshingly green entrance we started asking the 8yr old kids what would make them happy, what they would wish for and why. 
The first one to answer was a boy "I want a BB!" a what? we asked.  "'A Blackberry"" about 10 other boys shouted. A blond spiky hair kids, the only Caucasian,  got one out of his pocket to show us. Having the BB made him clearly the cool one.

Somewhat amazed we asked him why and what he needed it for. Maybe for an emergency to call his parents? we thought. "to ping with my chics" he replied. Girls giggling and the others boys acknowledged his answer. 
Trying to seek beyond materialistic needs PJs continued asking about happiness and invited the kids to write and illustrate on their happiness.

When time came to present in front of the class, the spiky haired boy was most eager to go first. Still a little weary of the result we invited him to come forward to tell his story on happiness.
He started off telling about his present boyish needs but then took a very surprising, yet smooth, turn when he wished for a normal and quiet life, with a wife, a house and good job. 
Not only did he present this in such a natural way, he once again impressed the other class mates and surprised us all.  
A true Storyteller we will remember.

Much gratitude goes out to Podium Mozaïek and the schools who have the PJs to return with workshops for some years now. We feel fortunate being able to get so much inspiration working with kids as well.

Poetry Jockeys, Worlds Reveal Worlds

 
 
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PJs, Amin and Martijn created an Interactive Storytelling workshop for Internations, a network community of expats and global minds.

The location was well chosen at Indian Restaurant Mayur, combining great food, writing (on the terrace in the sun :-) and presenting.

The result was grand with people from accross the globe sharing their Life Changing Stories.  Inspiring them to ask us to come back for more Interaction and connecting.

Some of the feedforward from participants:

"Besides being fun event, it was foremost very educational and, last but not least, brought us closer together as a group.  I highly recommend the Poetry Jockeys; it will add originality and new insights to any social event, may it be for an initial “meet and greet” or a more advanced workshop."

"I enjoyed this unique event. I wouldn't mind a repeat session ;)"

Poetry Jockeys, Words Reveal Worlds

 
 
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PJs Amin & Martijn created a workshop "Dream Future" for 10 and 11 year old kids, who attend the Weekend Academie.

They coached the kids on writing and presentation skills to share their Dream Future to VIPs such as Royal Dutch Princess Maxima.

With high press coverance some kids made it on National TV to spread their dream even further!

As we like to collaborate with other disciplines we co-created an exibition together with Dutch artist Martin van den Oever who worked simultaneously with the children on creating their own mirror portraits.

PJs have a long standing relationship with the Weekend Academie.
Over the years we have supported this great initiative with workshops and guest speakers.

 
 
A Poem for someone else written by a student
Today was the final presentation day of Project Catch.

For 31 weeks we worked together with 24 teenagers (15-17 years). Our sole goal was to get them more empowered, on the road to resilience, in touch with their needs. 

For this we adapted our program frequently. The basis remains expressive writing about experiences, thoughts and believes. Sharing these in stories, lyrics, poems, mood-boards combined with visual techniques is all possible. 

Somehow feeling sad to say goodbye after such an intense year in which they put so much trust into collaborating with the PJs. 

"It was great to see these teenagers express themselves in such divers ways.  To see them (re)discover other ways to get energy from, gives us energy to!"

PJs allowed for plenty of room for experimental education with ad-hoc decisions based on their needs. From how to search for information and validate this using both your smartphone and/or computer to social skills like coaching on job interviews. One special happening was the students  initiative to create a song for a 12 year old girl who was brutally killed.

"As a red tape we try to show them there is not one true path but many different ones one can choose from.
That is why our first lesson starts with writing about an experience that had a big impact on their lives. Sharing this with their peers connects and builds trust. It clears away obstacles enabling them to step onto a side path where they share their feelings to someone that means a lot to them. We purposely spend quite some time on the creation of that present; they write their own text, choose the typography, coloring, layout and photo or own drawing. This results in a beautiful gift made with much effort and love for which they receive much appreciation, again connecting them closer in building a bond that will strengthen them to step further on their path of life."

As a farewell present PJs created a video compilation of their work. To view this video see the link at the bottom (text and audio in Dutch only).

Feedback PJs received from the school:
" I was always surprised about the raw honesty of my students.
Within  1 ½  hours they wrote about a past emotion / experience / event that made much impact on them, followed by presenting this in front of their peers.

As a teacher I got a first impression about their skills, but I also got a glimpse into their soul. PJs work on the personal and creative skills of the students. They are allowed to be themselves and develop what they need.

This resulted in a personal poem (which gave a feel good / positive feeling to the student). Writing has a healing, binding and an enlightening influence."

Sheratee Marlin - Mentor and care coordinator ROCvA Gaasterland

Project Catch is made possible by:
The students & teachers of RocVaClick F1 and DMO (Dienst Maatschappelijke Ontwikkeling Amsterdam) -  City of Amsterdam, Social Development Service

About Catch: Is a project for youth in Amsterdam from 12 to 23 years. Using drama, music , dance, media or writing, they can strengthen their social skills, talent and work to develop their confidence.