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Big Ideas Fest

Creativity is a combination of discipline and childlike spirit ~ Robert Greene. The childlike spirit in me was recently unleashed at the Big Ideas Fest in Washington D.C. What was mind blowing can be summed up as being assigned to a group with an opportunity to collaborate on an innovative invention on paper and then later transform the idea into a 3D model. All of our ideas were sparked by writing thoughts on sticky-notes then narrowing the focus. The picture below is THE SQUAD right before heading into our powerful brainstorming sesh armed with more colorful post-its, sharpies, and our fearless leader.

Small bursts of improv were right up my alley since I'm the advisor of the Theatre Club at the college where I teach. What also helped move all of our ideas forward was the constant encouragement to "think outside the box" with zero limitations or judgements passed on other's ideas. Our group finally narrowed our focus to the following:

Design a project where the student and teacher are on equal footing

and go through a learning experience together.

WHAT WOULD THAT LOOK LIKE? Two separate groups emerged out of Squad 1:

"Mental Jam Session" focused more on the "process."

"Mind Brew" took a different spin and honed in on a possible "product."

We were able to put our prototypes on display like a museum for a "walk through." We also heard more testimonies about ideas that became a reality and solutions to some of the barriers the keynote speakers had to overcome.

Finally after a truly incredible experience I took a moment to reflect at the reflection pool before boarding my plane and wondered if I should try to move our idea forward as a pilot test run in my own environment on my own terms and report back to two amazing friends I've made along the way. Lake Land College made my trip possible through the Innovation Grant and I'm very grateful to them and Megan Simmons for the scholarship to attend.

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