Destination Imagination’s Latest Batch of STEAM-Based Challenges Continue to Rethink Education

William F Halloran,Elizabeth,New Jersey, Making Waves, Scientific Challenge, Middle Level, 131-66082

Destination Imagination (DI), a “global educational nonprofit dedicated to inspiring the next generation of innovators, leaders and creative problem solvers,” has recently launched the 2021-2022 creative season in the form of their signature seven Challenges. These Challenges are opportunities for students to foster creative problem-solving skills and reach 150,000 annual participants spread across 30 countries worldwide.

Destination Imagination’s mission, “to inspire and equip youth to imagine and innovate through the creative process,” is primarily pursued through STEAM-based Challenges that cover the categories of technical, scientific, engineering, fine arts, improvisational, service learning, and early learning. Each Challenge is an exciting extracurricular alternative to traditional learning methods for students to engage in unique activities that build self-confidence and teamwork, foster problem-solving skills, and encourage risk-taking and perseverance. Challenges are open to students from preschool through university.

The innovative approach created by DI is a clear demonstration of why rethinking education is a valuable approach for education leaders. A survey led by the Center for Childhood Creativity on the impact of participating in DI showed that 86% of participants agreed “that their teamwork skills improved within 1-2 years of participation” and 92% said that “that solutions to problems are often improved by considering a variety of perspectives.”

The team application period began August 1, 2021, kicking off the season that will heat up in February/March 2022, as teams present their solutions at local tournaments. The season culminates in May 2022, when the top teams worldwide compete in the Global Finals tournament.  This year’s Challenges continue the exciting trend of creative problem-solving opportunities, such as:

  • “Up Close” – The Scientific Challenge encouraging participants to “dive into a microworld”
  • “Festival Frenzy” – The Improvisational Challenge that asks participants to tell an improvised story about a global festival
  • “Roll With It” – The Engineering Challenge that tasks participants to build a structure that can roll while holding as much weight as possible.

If you are interested in learning more about Destination Imagination, visit destinationimagination.org/cein or contact [email protected]

To sign up for one of DI’s engaging webinars, visit: destinationimagination.org/webinar