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  • Writer's pictureShameer Bismilla

Milo Imagines The World

“Imagination is more important than knowledge” – Albert Einstein. Everyone is born with vivid imagination and like what Walt Disney once said, “Muscle grows flabby with disuse”, imagination of a child will slowly diminish in later years if he ceases to exercise it.

This powerful quality of imagination that human beings possess can act as a precursor to the creative thinking process. And I strongly believe that all it takes is a drop of imagination, and an invention regardless of its size will take place and transform into reality.

Reading ‘Milo Imagines the World’ to my class and studying Christian Anderson’s illustrations with acrylic paint is simply beautiful. It is inevitable for readers to have instant thoughts and feelings when reading a good book – this book is no exception; it made me realise that we naturally form assumptions when we travel on the road, train and/or people-watching, sitting in a restaurant.

In this story, Milo and his older sister took their monthly Sunday ritual subway trip to visit their incarcerated mother. Milo began to pay close attention to all the fellow riders. He observed a lonely blank-faced businessman, a woman in a wedding dress with a pup in her handbag and others. He began to imagine the riders’ lives and began to sketch them. He then continued to make assumptions about every commuter in the train. Milo’s assumptions slowly began to diminish when he spotted a boy in a suit going to the same place as he was going.

Milo’s assumptions shifted and he started to rethink his thoughts. He realised he is just like the boy, going through the same journey. The softness and heart-warming part of the story is when he met his mom at the correctional facility, and Milo showed her one picture that obviously meant a great deal for him: The three of them eating ice cream on a stoop on a beautiful summer day!

This smart and sweet story could teach you a thing or two about making judgements. My class ended the story with making their imaginary glasses that focus only on good things.


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