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Learning life skills from an unusual source

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Learning life skills from an unusual source

Guess which class is THE most useful class for an average person to take.

Best for work.

Best for personal.

The best.

I initially heard it, from two very different sources, as the best business class to take. Then it expanded to the best single class to take for life prep.

It teaches how to: listen, be present, face failure, handle tension, take risks, work with a group, follow someone’s lead, be forgiving of others and yourself, laugh at mistakes, speak in public, be flexible, understand how you think in comparison to others, think more quickly, play with words, increase mental focus, be more confident, and be more creative.

The class: improv.

Sometime I've been meaning to do for years but still haven't done.

And oh yeah, I almost forgot – it works so well with some people on the autism spectrum, there are improv classes set up especially for them. See the P.S. for a couple of examples.

In cartoons and in improv, anything can happen. You can be any character you want. The rules of real life don't always apply.
~Jack McBrayer

With improv, it's a combination of listening and not trying to be funny.
~Kristen Wiig

Action Ideas
Below are some ideas of how to add a bit of improv into our sometimes too scripted life.

1. One of the main concepts of improv is going with the flow. Whatever someone says or does onstage must be accepted and built upon. It is summarized with the phrase, “Yes, and . . . “.

Yes, and . . . can be a mindset. Canadian improv comedian, Colin Mochrie explains here's how he used it during a transitional period in his personal life. Within reason, he accepted changes in his life with a “Yes, and . . .” attitude.
2. Learn to take something out of the ordinary and make a connection with it. For example, the waiter game.
“Waiter, there’s a hammer in my soup.” “Ah yes, the chef really nailed it tonight.”
“Waiter, there’s a chair in my soup.” “Yes. The soup isn’t very good tonight so we wanted to cushion the blow.”
3. Word-by-word. A story is told through each person taking their turn by adding a single word to the story.
One . . . . day . . . . I. . . . went. . . . to . . . . the . . . . store. . . . .On . . . .my . . . . way . . . . I . . . saw . . .
I bet Dr. Grandin Temple would love this one. She believes learning to take turns was an invaluable skill she was fortunate enough to understand when she was young. 
4. For a huge list of ideas, organized by grade, title and category, go here.
5. If you want to collaborate with someone in another way, get together and save! We have a large number of items we won’t be transferring to the new website. They need to find a new home. We thought, if the items went to school or organizations, more people could make use of each item. So, that is the focus of our sale – getting the products into the hands of the greatest number of people.
For more information, check us out.

Providing calmness & comfort, learning & laughter,

InnovAID Inc.

P.S. If you live in Edmonton and want to see improv in action, there’s a new theatre dedicated to the art. The Grindstone runs six days/week , and sometimes with more than one show/evening.

I didn’t see a class for people on the spectrum specifically, but perhaps if enough people showed interest . . .

Other links: – How an improv class helped a girl with autism. – A class in Regina, SK, that teaches those on the spectrum how to do improve. - Benefits for those on the spectrum to learn improv. - How improv helped Colin Mochrie support his transgender daughter.

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