A Whole New World of Lights On® Learning

 Imagine the world through my eyes ….

Of course, you cannot. Unless I show you what I see.

Each of us is so different. Unique. With our own way of seeing, hearing, perceiving and experiencing the world. Our own gifts, talents, passions. Our own challenges and struggles. Our own stories which have shaped us into the people that we are.

We are all different.

Yet, generally, school experience is standardised and uniform, with little room to express our uniqueness, to share our own voice, our very individual take on reality.

Education has become so results focused, that often we forget the joy of the journey, the growth which enables us to bring our own gifts to the table and contribute with confidence and dignity to the world around us, which needs us all – in our own unique ways – to show up and care for her; to a society which needs all our differing gifts, strengths and creativity to flourish and prosper.

It is time to move out of the boxes in which we imagine learning, schooling, and to birth a new reality which fosters individual creativity, and fans to flame the passion within each of us. Maybe this strange time, stuck within the walls of our own houses, gives an opportunity to break through the walls in our collective thinking, to step outside into a new vision for learning.

This week, in the Lights On® JAM space, were almost seventy families trying to do just that. Lots of new members joined us, parents and educators, to look at learning differently.

The varied stations of our carousels encourage us to approach learning through different portals. Where do we naturally gravitate? Our children? Lots of lovely characters were created and shared through drawings, comic strips and movies. Lots of Lego, some brought to life with stop motion.

We see digi-wizards and artists in action, all accessing learning in their own unique way. Lots of families took their learning out of doors, beyond those confining walls, into fresh air and bluebell woods, natural spaces which can symbolise for us a moving away from our old school thinking to free our inner child and reimagine how learning, and childhood, can be.

The creative brief this week was to share the world through our eyes.

How would you respond? This brief is wide open and there are no limits, other than our own ideas about what is and isn’t possible.

Through my eyes the world is a place where every child has the right to learn in a way which values and enables them to flourish and to fly.

Parents and children responded in many ways. Essie showed us his view of the upside-down world from his trampoline. William wrote his first ever song. Leonardo brought everyday items to life with animation. Sofia built a wonderful den. Georgina took us on a walk through the woods, noting all she observed and delighting in climbing a tree. She shared her journey with natural confidence, learning to edit and present her story to an audience.

It is interesting that as we seek to facilitate our children’s learning, it is we adults who find ourselves pushed out of our comfort zones and forced to confront our own limiting beliefs, to address our own mindset.

Along the way, we rediscover passions of our own, perhaps long dormant. Given the opportunity, we share the unique ways in which we have come to see the world.

This week’s Lego challenge gave plenty of opportunity to play with our creativity and express ourselves in a different way. This became a whole family activity. Letting go of our own expectations, we are continually surprised at what we, and our children, can do. Without the pressure of a grading or evaluation, we are free to play, perhaps exploring new media for the first time.

We allow ourselves to make mistakes, to try again, to get stuck in and have a go. As we share our ideas and our work, others inspire us to think in new ways, to experiment, to push out to our edges.

The world through our eyes. Poems, films, beautiful photographs, stop motion animations, music. There are indeed so many ways to see the world.

My dream is a society that values our voices, an education system which allows the space for all our perspectives to be seen and validated. It is a world where everyone’s genius is nurtured and celebrated.

Interested in learning more? Come and JAM with us.

 Lights On® JAMS are discounted to just £15 for the three days, and are running throughout April. Find out more and sign up here.

Alice Khimasia
Seeing her eldest son's lights go out when he was 7, Alice took action to ensure his freedom to learn. She has been speaking and writing about her family's learning adventures ever since, and gave a TEDx talk in 2016. Alice is part of our Lights On® Academy and lives with her husband and 4 Lights On® Learners in the West Midlands.

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