Destination Imagination is an educational program where student teams solve open-ended Challenges and present their solutions at tournaments. In working to solve our Challenges, our teams learn important life skills like time management, collaboration, conflict resolution, and creative and critical thinking.
Up to 7 members can be on a team, and students from kindergarten through university level participate. Each team needs an adult Team Manager. Team Managers help students stay on track but do not directly help the team develop their solution to the DI Challenge. Team Managers are often faculty members or parents.
DI teaches the creative process by allowing teams to solve Challenges together as a team. A big part of our program is the Interference policy: in short, kids have to imagine, create and develop solutions on their own. Parents, Team Managers, family and friends can’t suggest ideas or force teams in certain directions. Outsiders can only facilitate the acquisition of skills and knowledge.
There are seven new Challenges to choose from each year. Each of the Challenges is developed by a team of educators and industry experts who target a particular area of the curriculum and its related standards of content and performance. The areas of focus include: Technical, Scientific, Fine Arts, Improvisational, Structural and Service Learning. There is also a non-competitive Early Learning Challenge that allows participants to develop social and problem solving skills.
Each season takes place from September through May. Depending on the Challenge, teams typically spend 2 to 4 months developing and practicing their Challenge solutions.
The team’s solutions are assessed at regional, state or country tournaments. While most schools run DI as an after school program, some school districts incorporate the program into their electives curriculum. Our tournaments provide the opportunity for participants to celebrate creativity with their peers and promote healthy competition. Every year, local volunteers help run 200 tournaments around the world.
Teams in our program learn higher order thinking and improve in creative thinking, critical thinking and collaborative problem solving. Our participants experience the creative process, develop new friendships and learn to work together.
Teams choose one of seven Challenges. After weeks spent creating and developing their solutions, they go to a tournament. Top-scoring teams advance, and the top tier goes to our Global Finals—the world’s largest celebration of creativity.
For more information on getting started, click here to visit our “Start a Team” page.