Irma Smegen (1970) is the founder of Speel je wijs – a company in the Netherlands that strives to improve education and a playful environment for children. Irma has been working with children her entire life. Along the way, she has balanced various roles: as a teacher, writer, designer, day care leader, director and speaker. For fifteen years, she was a professor of arts education at the Education department of Stenden University.
Irma writes educational books, develops educational materials and organizes trainings for professionals working with children. She speaks at congresses about her teaching methods and the positive effects of it on learning. Playing and playful learning are the main ingredients in Irma’s work. Topics are mindfulness, STEAM (Science Technology, Engineering, Arts, Mathematic) and language education.
Most important in her life is being Irmama of Coen and Anna. Together with her husband Irma runs De Flintenhof, a business in minerals and crystals from all around the world in their beautiful village Orvelte.
Irma is known internationally for her work in promoting arts, playful learning and mindfulness in education.
“Irma was really engaging and immediately got out group into a calm state of concentration (and enjoyment) that lasted through the session. There were lots of practical activities that could be easily adapted for a wide differentiation of abilities (which is essential in our school) and the focus on mindfully being in the present and focusing on ourselves (and being mindful of others) are vital skills that should be part of the whole ethos of our schools.” Richard Brocklehurst – Headteacher Glenlyon Primary School – Scotland
“Joy, Inspiration, Learning is the words that comes to mind when I think about Irma. I am impressed by her work and –as a teacher – I found many many useful resources! Above all, I was impressed with Irma’s ability to implement fun in science learning. Irma would be a true asset for any task on promoting, learning – or just have fun and big smiles! – teaching science.” Nikolaos Nerantzis – Physicist in Special Education Thessaloniki – Greece
“Irma offers a relaxed, informative session that will support you not only with bringing mindfulness into your classroom but bringing it into your own lifestyle too. The activities are short and achievable and I am really looking forward to building them into our everyday classtime.” Ciara Gibson – Teacher Grandtully Primary School – Scotland
Speel je wijs (Dutch)
Mindful at School (English)
HeArt 4 Education (Dutch and English)
STEAM education (English)
Spelen in Stilte: Mindfulness in de klas (Dutch)
Speel je mee in Li La Land? (Dutch)
De Flintenhof (Dutch)
For further information please visit Irma’s LinkedIn page.