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Transforming Language Arts

Transforming Language Arts

Transforming Language Through Art

Professional Development Workshop

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My overall purpose is to share personal stories of healing and transformation in order to transcend language perception.  Forming connections are crucial for deep understanding.  I’m a performance artist and educator. I taught for 15 years in a vibrant, bilingual, Montessori classroom. The school was founded by social activist, Corky Gonzales. The Escuela Tlatelolco Centro de Estudios in Denver, CO, shaped my perception as an artist of life. Through observing children’s innate ability to lovingly express, I learned that there is more involved with language exchange than words on a page or spoken aloud.

In my presentation, my goal is to use body language and Urdu poetry to convey a story.  Storytelling can be conveyed in many formats that go beyond words. In performance art, I utilize a combination of Classical Indian inspired dance mudras and facial expressions combined with Urdu poetry to create a storytelling experience.

On an intimate level, I invite listeners and audience members to engage in self- reflective interpretation.  I invite emotional depth among human beings sharing this experience. My larger goal is to dialogue ways in which we may expand our current understanding of linguistics and engage social development as a whole. I use performance art and language to share a message intended to be understood by everyone regardless of the language(s) we speak.  

I’ve studied classical dance for several years. Urdu is my family’s native language from Pakistan. Through combining these mediums, I wish to convey a simple message for personal interpretation. After my performance, I will open the space for meaningful discussion.

Finally, I will invite participants to ponder this question with me: “if you are able to understand and connect with me in a personal way, how can we take this concept to a new level in education, relationships and community building?” Come with me…


I am certified in both general and special education and a current MFA-IA graduate student at Goddard College. My intention is to express stories of healing and transformation through various mediums. My current art practice spans the arenas of performance art, wellness and education.  Raven Speaks embodies a performative platform of Neena Expressions. This artistic vision is influenced by Classical Indian and Middle Eastern Dance movement, Qigong, meditation, music, lyrical poetry and spoken word, in Urdu, French, Spanish or English.  I have been studying various dance and language designs for most of my life thus far.  I am passionate about transforming education through language and art.