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“Everything you can imagine is real” – Pablo Picasso
While today’s quote is quite simple (and one of the simplest that Picasso himself wrote), I have to say that I love that it’s about imagination. Sometimes, when we’re working hard to create lesson plans that work, we forget to make sure that our students are having fun. It’s so important to make sure they are both learning and enjoying in class.
That’s why I’m a raving fan of games in education, of course.
Why Imagination Is Important In Education
Well, the answer to why imagination is important in education is quite simple, in my opinion. Really, it’s what makes learning fun. If students (especially learners of a second language) are always worried about learning verb tenses, perfecting their grammar, and filling in worksheets perfectly, how can they be relaxed enough to enjoy the subject?
Games help relieve this anxiety, at least for my students.
You’ve seen my post on Linguapolis, right? I’ve been using it for the last few weeks (I have a demo version from one of the creators, Vita Kogan) and I love it! In fact, I use the game specifically to help them overcome their “most challenging” verb tense.
What do I mean? Well, I often have students tell me that “present perfect” is the most difficult tense (They’re Spanish or Catalan native speakers). So, we spend 30 minutes of a class using the board game, and they try to use the present perfect for every game square they land on. It’s quite a challenge – but they have fun doing it! As the teacher you can play as well, especially in a tutoring context. That way, you can model the tense during your turns, making it less stressful.
3 Steps To Achieve Anything You Can Imagine
Creativity is one of the best parts of teaching, in my opinion. As I mentioned above, games help learning become more fun. While that’s a super simple concept, it’s one I abide by every class, whether I’m teaching adults of kids. (If you missed my post on 5 Grammar Games to play with kids and absolute beginner adults, check it out.)
Want to go one step further and do anything you can imagine in your own life?
Here are three tips:
1. Remember Your Childhood
Don’t forget that your childhood hobbies and passions may just be ones you want to revive. For me, that was writing (I love to write!), playing the piano and learning languages. Even though I worked in the corporate marketing world for a good 5 years, I decided to return back to my passions. I haven’t looked back! What’s your passion?
2. Imagine The Future
Now, this one can be difficult. It’s easy to talk about visualizing the future, but how can you actually do it? Personally, I’m a huge fan of vision boards, whiteboards full of timelines about what the future will look like, and taking a few minutes every week to close your eyes tightly and feel as though you believe you will feel in the future.
Try it! Then, let me know in the comments which of these ideas you try, and how it makes you feel.
3. Focus on Finding Opportunities
Okay, this one’s more practical. While visualization is great, nothing happens without taking some action. Connect with others. That’s my biggest piece of advice for finding opportunities. Social networks, personal networks and simply people you engage with on a daily basis (even though something like a blog!) can present you with the most amazing opportunities. Don’t hesitate – take action!
Well, I hope today’s “short but sweet” post left you with some interesting thoughts on how to use creativity in your classroom.
Stay tuned for an upcoming blog post about creative classroom activities! Don’t forget to sign up below this post so you have access to motivational posters and my full printables library, updated monthly!
Have a lovely and productive Monday!
P.S. The photo for today’s post (and poster!) is one I took right here in Barcelona, at the Gaudi La Pedrera night tour – definitely worth checking out!
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