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Content Starts What is an Imagination Classroom?

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MAY 9 2023

Today, we visited Nimbin Central School. We were welcomed by Elder Uncle Rory, who we spent an hour or so with, yarning, laughing, listening and learning. He helped us feel grounded and connected to this special place, before we headed off to meet the students.

Waangenga started us off with a fun movement workshop … helping us connect to each other, our environment and ourselves … while tuning in to the question

What is an Imagination Classroom?

You’re only limited by your mind

Alejandro Velazquez

The students ideas flowed and we explored all the different ideas that sprung to mind … they unravelled a whole lot of ideas they feel are really important to learning. These happen to be things that aren’t strongly focused on in a more typical classroom.

  • In an Imagination Classroom, education is connective – the classroom fosters connections between the students and each other, their teacher, nature and their limitless imagination.
  • The layout of a classroom should support these connections and facilitate the building of relations between peers and also with the teacher so that students feel that they are not silos being spoken at but that they are learning together. The types of furniture and the layout of this can help the space be comfy and feel nurturing.
  • With an Imagination Classroom, outside time is important – building in time to learn outside, from nature, the greatest teacher we have and have time to oxygenate the mind and body with fresh air, and also exercise our long-distance vision and observational skills in natural lighting.
  • An Imagination Classroom prioritises regular walking breaks. Learning tasks encourage students to move through the room as they explore, discover and learn. Also, ways of learning don’t always fall back on having to look at a white board. Learning through story and presentation are valued. For instance incursions with theatre groups might be scheduled allowing knowledge to be shared through story.
  • An Imagination Classroom is mindful of emotional well-being and is structured to promote this.

We want more one on one conversations – especially with our teacher


And when the Nimbin Central Students minds were flowing with Imagination they said:

We want to learn about things that are important to us and our world at this time … and we want more one on one conversations – especially with our teacher … we would love our teacher to be interested in listening to us and to try to understand the world from our perspective.

We want to be able to connect with animals (so many ways this can be explored and so many things to be learnt!)

We’d love to learn how to build a rollercoaster (think about all the engineering and physics that could be explored here, plus the health science looking at the importance of finding healthy ways to let out adrenaline!)

We’d love a place to dream up the seemingly impossible, like a a pool filled with M&Ms and an incredible, magical, Elon Musk wallet that you can open up and money just pours out of it (think about all the creative writing that could be developed!)

And to bring today’s session to a close, we gathered around the towering, protective grandmother tree (pictured above) and thought about all we’d explored, discovered and shared … the students wondered about the next steps towards breathing life into this space…

We look towards the school’s moto:
Success Through Diversity

These words further open our minds to consider how an Imagination Classroom will celebrate and foster a rich ecology of diverse thinkers, and how these ideas can go on to contribute towards the betterment of our collective future.

We hope to return to Nimbin Central School in the near future and see how this Imagination Classroom has been brought to life!

And to sum up our experience:

Today we created something amazing. I feel so good with what came out of the Kids, the teachers, and Blake and Waangenga (AIME).

Alejandro Velazquez
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