In summer 2016, we took our knowledge and skillset in dramatic arts to the International Conference on Imagination and Education.
After writing a paper and getting accepted as a 45-minute workshop, we headed up to Vancouver, BC, for a three-day conference with other educators from around the country. In our workshop time, we drew in many teachers looking to find out more about how we used the dramatic arts in elementary classrooms. We had people joining all throughout the session when walking by and seeing us up on our feet, engaging physical movement and imaginations to tell a story, and laughing!
Many educators expressed interest in bringing foundry10 to their classroom and we encouraged them to continue to reach out to us with questions about the curriculum they experienced with us that day. Many participants cited that they planned to use the material in their traditional classrooms and after the session had commenced people stayed to ask specific questions about how they could tailor the dramatic arts curriculum to a particular topic or unit they were currently working with in class. The teachers came from all sorts of backgrounds and experiences. Some taught pre-school but the range ran through post-secondary, all were present with us and we spent a good deal of time discussing opportunities to scaffold the activities we demonstrated for the varying age groups.
Teachers were willing participants and jumped right into the playful approach to the dramatic arts exercises and therefore stayed with us enough to ask insightful questions when we shared our research findings from various programs. A keynote speaker from the weekend spoke about adding an element of “WONDER” to the work we do with imaginative education, and we found that WONDER is a theme throughout all of the most inspiring dramatic arts work in the classroom.