Tuesday, January 19, 2016

{imagination} #sol16

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The other day I was about to recycle an empty box and my daughter quickly requested it for a project. How could I say no?

The "project" was collaboratively created between my two five year old girls.

Our cat, CJ, received a Hex Bug in her Christmas stocking ... it was confiscated by my girls and they designed a new house for the little battery operated critter.

The talking and thinking and sharing and trying and trying again and creating and wondering and questioning went on and on for over an hour.  This project was an opportunity for my girls to be creative without limits or rules. They only needed a little glue, tape, scissors, and markers.

I was truly amazed at their little Hex Bug home including so much detail.  A fireplace, a teddy bear in bed with a fold up blanket, a chimney (not near the fireplace ... ok, we can work on that detail), a letter in the mail slot, a door mat, pictures on the wall --

"How did you ever think of this?" I asked after they gave me the tour of the new house.

"You just need a little imagination, Mom," M. told me in her imagination expert voice.

And I smiled knowing she was right.  We all need to use a little imagination in life.  Imagine all the possibilities.


I wonder what these two girls will be designing next ...

This reminded me of an article I read last summer Love Letters: 6 Essential Actions That Support Growth by Julie Wright. (Published on the Heinemann blog/website.)  One of the essential actions that supports growth is design.  Here is what Julie wrote about designing:
Action 3: Design 
Being curious about something drives us to take a closer look. Curiosity often leads us to find clarity and urgency in ways that compel us to create. Many times, feeding our inquiry gives us the motivation and purpose for designing something. When we design something, we imagine what could be, which can lead us to create something new for the world. Design gives us this sense of never being done. It requires being okay with the notion that we may need to make several attempts before it begins to take shape or make sense. Making something, especially collaboratively, creates buy-in; we take ownership. This is true for all learners, young and old. Making something is contagious—once we’ve been given the license to do so, the natural tendency is to want to keep doing it. That makes designing naturally transferrable.


  1. Yay, mom! I love that you facilitated your girls' experiential learning. What little innovators.

  2. This is precious! I love watching those little minds and hands at work!

  3. How wonderful. My kids spent weeks with a couple of appliance boxes many summers ago. No toy ever brought so much joy.

  4. Our girls would have a blast together! There is always a cardboard construction project of some sort going on at our house. A few months ago I procured a giant box at school and some grade 4 boys had as much fun doing stuff with it as my 5 year old daughter has with hers.

  5. Love this! I especially love the connection to the article as well. It's good to be reminded of this as I recently saw an image (tried, but failed to find it) that shared the decline of student inquiry and/or curiosity the further they advance in school. Thanks for sharing and for fostering this creativity with your girls!

  6. Love seeing the girls' creation, Michelle. It's been a while since I've read your posts to see what they're up to, growing up! Boxes are just the best thing, aren't they?

  7. Wow! So creative in their designing!


Thanks for sharing your thoughts.