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Creativity and Imagination

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Creativity is another cognitive skill that suffers from the fallacy of inborn ability.  This process is one that occurs mostly on a subconscious level as a result of a well prepared and educated mind shaped by a variety of experiences and knowledge.  A well prepared mind boasts three character strengths; adventurous, persistence and bravery.  Being adventurous enough to take two seemingly unrelated things and put them together, being persistent enough to work through the problems and challenges until something new emerges or an answer reveals itself, and being brave enough to expose this new combination or solution to the world.

Imagination is a skill used in a variety of cognitive processes like predicting, planning, hypothetical reasoning, visualizing events in the past or future, language comprehension and in design.  This skill uses memories and experiences that already exist in two ways; 1.) To dream up fictional events or stories about princesses, dragons and robots that can fly, and 2.) To visualize something non-fiction that hasn’t yet been seen, has yet to occur or even exist.

Enhancing Creativity and Imagination

The term ‘combinatory play’ is used to describe the moment when creativity and imagination are at work.  Albert Einstein once said, “Combinatory play seems to be the essential feature in productive thought”.  What he means by ‘combinatory play’ is how an individual takes two independent ideas, facts, symbols or objects and allows them to interact with each other.  ‘Productive thought’ in this light, is the end result of that combinatory play period or “incubation”.  Productive thought does not have to be perfect or even something that works the first time.  Failure can be just as productive, in some cases, as success.

Try out the following creativity and imagination activities.  You can set a timer if it helps you move along or if you struggle to generate ideas under pressure, spend as much time as you wish.

1.) Write down as many number of uses as you can think of:

Brick                       Book                      Chair                     Paper towel roll                Plastic Cup


2.) You’ve shown up to a construction site and forgot your toolbox.  Time to get creative.  Think of as many different items you might be able to use for each forgotten tool.



Measuring tape

Hard hat


Computation and Calculation

By | Blog, Enrichment, Enrichment for Adults, Ignite! At Home, Ignite! At School, Ignite! In The Workplace, Interventions, Math | No Comments

The ability to select and apply basic arithmetic operations (addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division problems) quickly and accurately require well developed computational skills. Calculating skills then are the techniques and methods in which we carry out these operations using mental methods, paper-and-pencil, and other counting tools to help us arrive at the answer.


Enhancing Computation and Calculation skills

Math continues to be one of those skills perceived as ‘fixed at birth’ and is one of the most avoided brain functions, often outsourced to a calculator or computer.  Like reading, it’s a subject that requires time, patience and perseverance in order to become proficient and even grow to love it.   Those that have well rounded computation and calculation skills spend time using a variety of calculating tools, especially mental methods and expose themselves to a wide variety of problems involving numbers.

Love it or hate it, basic numeracy skills are a vital part to everyday life.  Whether comparing prices, calculating tax, reading a statistic, splitting a pizza between 6 friends or trying to decide if you can jump over that puddle, computing and calculating are life-saving and life changing cognitive skills.

Try this Number Search activity to challenge your computation skills by selecting addition or subtraction to make the equations true.

Work on your calculating skills using a variety of methods, mental, pen and paper, objects, abacus, etc. in this Mixed Operations work sheet from www.math-aids.com

Today’s BrainWOD: 081415

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A Mugging Caught on Camera

Do today’s CrossFit mainsheet workout, then:
Watch this video once:

If you witnessed a crime, would you be a reliable eye witness? Answer the following questions.

  1. What was the suspect wearing?
  2. What ethnicity was the suspect?
  3. What did the suspect look like?
  4. Describe the victim?
  5. What was stolen?
  6. What colour was the vehicle parked beside the crime scene?
  7. Where did the crime take place?
  8. The man who tried to help the victim, what colour was he wearing?
  9. Who else was involved? What did they do?
  10. Were there any other eye witnesses?

Today’s BrainWOD: 081215

By | wod | No Comments


In 4 minutes, perform as many wall balls as possible.

In 4 minutes, perform as many pullups as possible.

In 4 minutes, perform as many shuttle run “suicides” as possible.

In 4 minutes, name as many one-syllable words as possible that rhyme with “JUMP.”

(there are 22.)

Today’s BrainWOD: 080715

By | Memory, wod | No Comments


“Crime Scene” by Jeff Martin of The Brand X Method

800m Run

3:00 Wall Sit

800m Run

Recall all items in the room where the wall sit was done.


Setup: while participants are on their first run, scatter up to 30 random objects on the floor in the gym. Don’t mention them during the wall sits.

After their second run, have them recall as many of the objects as possible.


August 3-7 Programming: Chris

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Oops, I Forgot My List!
3:00 minutes to look at this grocery list:
4 rounds:
200m run
20 double unders
10 wall ball

Recall your grocery list.

Simon Says

Own Workout
Then 5:00 of Simon.


Letter Recall

3 Burpee box jumps

Read the first set of letters (5 seconds max)

3 Burpee box jumps

Recall the first set of letters. Read the next set of letters.

3 burpee box jumps.

Recall the second string of letters. Read the third string of letters.

Do all 10 sets.

Read Recall
H W  
U V  
P N V R  
J G H T  
T Z L A M  
B V T Y H  
C R T F P J  
Q R T V Y U  
K R M Y B D G  
Y B U S A L E  



Study Grocery List for 3:00

4 rounds
200m Run
20 Double Unders
10 Wall Balls

Recall Grocery List

Own Workout


5:00 of Simon



3 Burpee box jumps

Read the first set of letters

3 burpee box jumps

Recall the first set of letters. Read the next set.

3 burpee box jumps

Continue through all 10 sets.



Today’s BrainWOD: 080515

By | wod | No Comments

3 somersaults

9 pushups

12 squats

Go through the circuit as many times as possible in 8:00.


Add 300 words to the paragraph beginning with this sentence:

“When the aliens landed, the moon was so bright that they…..”

Do the challenge in written or verbal format.


Today’s BrainWOD: 072915

By | Language, Memory, Public Speaking, Uncategorized, wod | No Comments

Use the following words in an oral story: burglar, envelope, forest, desk lamp. Start the narration as soon as the workout has finished.


Hollow Rock to Squat to Pike Jump x 5

Hollow Rock to Squat to Tuck Jump x 5

Hollow Rock to Squat to Missile Lunch x 5

Lateral Plank Walk – 20m

4 rounds.

Speaking while under duress (stress) is a valuable skill that can be built in the gym. Your body doesn’t know the difference between physical stress and mental stress. We can simulate stressful conditions with exercise, and thereby condition ourselves to pressure in the workplace.