During 2019 we developed the Vision and Strategy for the House of Imagination (HOI), with the renaming of the organisation from 5x5x5=creativity to House of Imagination in August 2019.
HOI is a research organisation with a focus on understanding, nurturing and inspiring children’s and young people’s creative and critical thinking. In practice, HOI uses action research to plan and deliver innovative programmes that enable children to shape their lives through creative activity and schools to change their practices through professional development and school-based activity. At its heart is co-enquiry between children, teachers and creative professionals.
The Vision statement sets out the future development of HOI including keeping open the ambition of creating a permanent base in Bath. It states that the House of Imagination provides a range of spaces for children and young people to collaborate with creative professionals. It is a home for improvisation, creativity and innovation and a place to make those things visible to an international audience through research.
HOI is driven by a desire for change in both children’s lives and in schools, focusing on an exploration of the possibilities that creativity offers. Children need more opportunities to develop their creativity and to experiment and teachers need more support to integrate these skills. Through research and dissemination HOI provides evidence for educational and cultural change, helping to build a strong cultural ecology that in turn supports children, schools and creative professionals.
The development of House of Imagination from 5x5x5=creativity builds on what has been achieved since 2000, but with a focus on reaching wider audiences, developing public engagement and professional development in a more co-ordinated, effective and accessible way. We want to bring schools, cultural organisations and local communities together to develop creative learning so that it is part of their long-term vision too. Local partnerships are central to this – especially with Bath Spa University and local creative and cultural industries, with whom we’re working more closely on professional development and public engagement, including this year’s Forest of Imagination.