LCI to Join WNET Celebration of Teaching & Learning on March 16

In three weeks, more than 10,000 North American educators will converge on the Hilton New York for WNET’s seventh annual Celebration of Teaching & Learning. The Celebration is a major professional development conference that includes over 40 featured speakers and 100 interactive workshops, as well as two exhibition halls full of education resources. This year, as in 2011, I’ll have the privilege of presenting there, on a panel with Madeleine Holzer, director of educational development at Lincoln Center Institute, and 2010 National Teacher of the Year Sarah Wessling.

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Lincoln Center Institute’s 2012 Annual Benefit Gala on March 7

Patrick McMullan Company © 2011

Once a year, supporters of Lincoln Center Institute (LCI) gather, enjoy dinner and a world-class musical performance, and honor individuals and organizations that embody LCI’s ideals. These fundraisers celebrate LCI’s tireless efforts to bring the arts to young people, and to develop their skills of imagination, creativity, and innovation. So it is with great anticipation that I announce this year’s Annual Benefit Gala, to be held on March 7 at Frederick P. Rose Hall in New York City.

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Lincoln Center Institute Is on Twitter

A quick announcement for readers of Imagination Now: Lincoln Center Institute (LCI) is now on Twitter as LCInstitute. This is another highly useful way to interact with LCI online. Follow us to keep up with our efforts to promote imagination, creativity, and innovation in education and society, and to stay informed about relevant news from around the world. We look forward to meeting you, and conversing with you (in 140 characters or less), on Twitter!

Imagination Lesson Plans Now Available on Curriki

As reported over on Lincoln Center Institute’s (LCI’s) website, LCI’s Imagination Lesson Plans are now available for download on Curriki! You may recall that we announced our new partnership with Curriki, the leading online community for educators around the globe, at America’s Imagination Summit in July. This week marks the official launch of LCI’s Curriki group, which currently offers two sets of Imagination Lesson Plans for the use of K-12 teachers everywhere. More will be uploaded soon.

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Watch America’s Imagination Summit

In case you were on vacation in August or just spending some quality time away from the computer, Lincoln Center Institute (LCI) would like to remind you that comprehensive video footage of America’s Imagination Summit, the major event we hosted here in New York City on July 21-22, is available online.

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Imagination Now Is Back

My fellow bloggers and I are thrilled to announce the return of Imagination Now after a brief summer hiatus. Let me tell you about a few of the exciting developments that have kept Lincoln Center Institute busy in recent months.

LCI hosted America’s Imagination Summit—the capstone of our two-year, national Imagination Conversations initiative—on July 21 and 22 at Lincoln Center in New York City. The Summit gathered nearly 200 influencers—in business, government, science, and the arts, among other fields—to determine how to put imagination, creativity, and innovation at the center of U.S. public education. The event was streamed live to thousands of viewers across the country.

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Imagination First Comes Out in Paperback

In their 2009 book Imagination First: Unlocking the Power of Possibility, Imagination Now contributors Eric Liu and Scott Noppe-Brandon debunked a few myths, took imagination off its lofty pedestal, and made their premise clear: everyone has imagination! It is an essential cognitive skill that this society needs in large supplies if it is to meet the future head-on, and since it is a skill, it must be practiced.

The pragmatic approach, resulting in the description of actual imagination practices that are at the core of the book, paid off: the readers were at the very least intrigued, at best they were inspired to change their work strategies, their academic practices, even their private lives. They came from fields of interest as diverse as those of the imagination practitioners described on the book’s pages: think food retailer, teacher, marine corps officers.

Imagination First has just been reprinted in paperback edition. There was a specific purpose to this second edition: to reflect on what had been learned since the first edition, to “enhance” the book with additional texts and information, and, given its original success, to make sure that it reached the widest audience ever. Continue reading