Memorable learning experiences

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Overall, my experience at the Faculty of Education at Simon Fraser University will always be one of the most memorable experiences of my life. I was one of the youngest and least experienced teachers of my cohort program, but it is incredible how much I learnt, not only from my instructors, but from the whole cohort, and graduate students from other programs in the Faculty.

Before coming to SFU, I had lived in Mexico, my home country, my whole life. My experiences as a student and professional were biased from a single-sided cultural vision on education. This is why I wanted to learn from another education system and see what else was out there. I could not conceive the fact that there was nothing I could do to put my two cents in for improving quality of education in my home country.

Carolina Lopez with her parents on Convocation day

I chose to apply for a specific M.Ed. program focused on a theory developed by Kieran Egan, a wonderful SFU professor. The fact that Imaginative Education is an innovative theory that is still being enriched by educators in practice with the support of its creators motivated me to take a chance on SFU’s Faculty of Education.

I was not wrong. By the second term, I was given the opportunity by Dr. Egan and Dr. Gillian Judson, our program advisor, to work as a research assistant at the Imaginative Education Research Group. Both of these amazing faculty members encouraged me and challenged me in pursuing my career goals within the program. We applied and received the Mitacs Globalink Research Award for our project: Teaching Literacy through Imaginative Education in Mexican Context during the summer of 2014.

Carolina's Imaginative Education class in Mexico

Through this project, I was given the opportunity to try out what I was learning in a familiar cultural and educational context. It was both challenging and rewarding. It opened so many doors for future collaborations in which I am working now. As a result of this project, we are setting up a regional network in Mexico for educators interested in Imaginative Education and its programs. More and more schools and institutions have been showing interest and support for the implementation of these valuable educational principles and practices, and I am more than happy to continue collaborating with these educators, who I admire so much and to whom I am so grateful for their trust and time invested in me. I hope to contribute back and to continue to have opportunities for sharing these memorable learning experiences.

Carolina Lopez
M.Ed. 2015

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