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Imagination Journey | Energy City

Updated: Jun 29, 2020

Scott Gibbs, Alley Theatre Master Teaching Artist, will walk you through an example of an Arts Integration exercise known as ‘The Imagination Journey'. In this exercise, a storyteller guides students more deeply into learning. Through visualizing a story world, a new curriculum can be introduced, explored, and discussed using effective prompting and student experience. You will notice that by approaching the subject matter with an element of theatricality and imaginative play, your students will be become engaged on a whole new level and deepen their academic achievement.  


  • Video with audio

  • Arm's length of space around each student


For this Imagination Journey Lesson Topic

INTRODUCTION TO ENERGY CITY SCIENCE OBJECTIVE: Students will be able to explore how light, sound, and thermal energy are produced and used as well as the relationship between force and motion.  


  • Use the senses to explore different forms of energy such as light, thermal, and sound. (Sci.K.6A) 

  • Observe and describe the ways that objects can move. (Sci.K.6D) 

  • Identify and discuss how different forms of energy such as light, thermal, and sound are important to everyday life. (Sci.1.6A) 

  • Demonstrate the ways that objects can move. (Sci.1.6C) 

  • Investigate the effects on objects by increasing or decreasing amounts of light, heat, and sound energy. (Sci.2.6A) 

  • Demonstrate and observe how position and motion can be changed by pushing and pulling objects. (Sci.3.6B)

THEATRE ARTS OBJECTIVE: Students will be able to use their body, voice, and imagination to explore a visualized environment and solve challenges related to energy, force, and motion. 


Sound Energy, Light Energy, Thermal Energy, Force 

How to Lead the Imagination Journey

Step 1: Center the students’ focus and activate their imaginations by asking them to close their eyes, listen, and imagine.  

Step 2: Guide the class on an imaginary journey out of your school and drive to a place called: Energy City. Ask students to describe the things they see, hear, smell, and feel.  

Step 3: Introduce the first challenge of no sound. Ask students to copy you and create controlled sounds to produce sound energy. Discuss other producers of sound energy.  

Step 4: Introduce the next challenge of no light. Ask students to find their trusty flashlights and then flip the giant light switch! Discuss other producers of light energy.  

Step 5: Introduce the next challenge of no heat. Ask students to rub their hands together to create thermal energy. Discuss other producers of thermal energy.  

Step 6: Visually take in the world you have created and the energy you have added!  

Step 7: Find a magic door and practice pushing and pulling.  

Step 8: Have students join you in going through the door and landing right back into the classroom.  

Imagination Journey Tips 

  • Introduce the idea of “The Imagination”. We assume children know what their imaginations are, but it is our job to teach them the value and power that their imaginations truly hold.  

  • Bring the students into a calm state of focus - closing their eyes, lowering your voice to create a dramatic tone, or possibly dimming the lights. 

  • Using your voice, visualization, and modeling, guide students through an imagination journey. Explore your storytelling skills as you dictate imagining leaving the classroom...heading out onto the playground, walking into the woods, swimming into the ocean, flying into the sky...  

  • Don’t worry if students speak out or announce the things that they see. As long as you’ve established class management and rules about raising hands, you’re okay. That’s how you know it’s working!  

  • Using your skills as a narrator and actor, discover (along with your students) the living and non-living things in our imaginary story world. Approach these things with curiosity, intrigue, and keen visualization and your students will follow.


Meet the Artist

Alley Theatre Master Teaching Artist, actor

Scott Gibbs is a professional actor working in commercial, voiceover, and theatre from Houston, Texas. He has been a Teaching Artist with the Alley Theatre for 4 years and holds a BA in Theatre Arts from Centenary College of Louisiana. His professional experience as an educator has focused on Physical Comedy, Commediadell'arte, and Improvisation. Scott's regional teaching credits include Charleston Stage (SC), Seaside Repertory Theatre (FL), Merry Go Round Playhouse (NY); and locally: Main Street Theatre, Page Parkes Talent Agency, and Alley Theatre Summer Conservatory.

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