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Western Animation / Language Arts Through Imagination

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''Come and join me in my travels
to the pathways of the mind
When you use imagination
There's no telling what you'll find.''
Figment, the first verse of the theme song "I'm Figment"
Language Arts Through Imagination is an educational video series created by Disney Educational Media subsidiary EPCOT Educational Media and starring the purple dragon Figment of Journey into Imagination fame.

Each of these shorts take place in a playhouse in the world of Figonia and focus on an animated Figment (Billy Barty) teaching 2 live action kidsnote  about basic concepts of reading and writing and how imagination plays a role in putting those aforementioned concepts into practice. Stock Footage of animated Disney films (as well as miscellaneous live action footage) was used to help illustrate the topics.

The series had 11 shorts created between 1988 and 1989, exclusively meant for use in elementary schools.

  1. "Would You Eat A Blue Potato?": Figment invites Katie and Scott over to his playhouse to have snacks but all the foods are strangely colored and look "off" to the kids as a result. This leads to a discussion about colors and their meanings.
  2. "What Can You See By Looking?": Figment enlists the help of Todd and Dhara to find a book called the "Bookus Dragonius" via solving clues left by Figment's Uncle Max, who hid the book.
  3. "Do Dragons Dream?": Figment helps Emma and Jeremy with their school assignment (writing a story about a dragon) by teaching them and the viewers about the role imagination plays in creating stories.
  4. "How Does It Feel To Be An Elephant?": Figment takes Matt and Lisa on an "imagination safari" to see different real and imaginary animals. They also imagine what it would be like to be those animals.
  5. "How Does It Feel To Fly?": When King Dreary of Alpha Kadalpha tries to ban dragons and other flying fantasy creatures/beings, Figment enlists the help of Beth and Danny to change his mind via getting every flyer to leave the kingdom in protest. In the process, a story is compared to a flight, as each one has a beginning, a middle, and an end.
  6. "How Does Sound Sound?": Figment, Peternote , and Jessica learn about sound.
  7. "Reading Magic With Figment and Peter Pan": Peter Pan winds up in Figonia after pixie dust getting into his eyes causes him to get lost on the way to Wendy Darling's home. Figment and Amy teach Peter how important it is to know how to read as a way of helping him out.
  8. "Writing Magic With Figment and Alice In Wonderland": Alice winds up in Figonia and Figment and Andy help her get back into the book she is from by writing a new story.
  9. "What's An Abra Without A Cadabra?": When Justin and Kim accidentally transport themselves to Figonia by reciting an incantation printed in a magic kit, Figment tries to help them return home via trying several other incantations.
  10. "Where Does Time Fly?": Figment enlists the help of Nick and Jessie to create a story for a contest he wants to enter.
  11. "The Case of the Missing Space": Figment enlists the help of Alex and Natalie to figure out the identity of a letter writer who needs his help with "Troublesome Tweedles" (Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum). Includes a claymation sequence animated by Craig Bartlett.

With the power of examples and the magic in your mind, you can trope anything you want to trope:

  • Adapted Out: Dreamfinder is nowhere to be found in this series.
  • All Just a Dream: Emma and Jeremy's encounter with Figment was a daydream in "Do Dragons Dream?"
  • Alliterative Title: "Do Dragons Dream?"
  • Alternate Continuity: The series is this to the original Journey Into Imagination ride seeing as Dreamfinder is not present and Figment lives on his own in Figonia.
  • Bizarre Taste in Food: In "Would You Eat A Blue Potato?", Figment's snack for Katie and Scott consists of blue potatoes, green milk, pink cauliflower, and orange sandwichesnote . At the end, Katie and Scott try the orange sandwiches and wind up liking them.
  • Canis Latinicus: The Bookus Dragonius in "What Can You See By Looking?"
  • Color Motifs: The main topic that is Discussed in "Would You Eat A Blue Potato?".
  • Crossover:
    • Besides "Reading Magic With Figment and Peter Pan" and "Writing Magic With Figment and Alice In Wonderland", Merlin appears in a secondary role via stock footage in "What's An Abra Without A Cadabra?".
    • Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum appear in a secondary role in "The Case of the Missing Space".
  • Cue the Flying Pigs: In "Do Dragons Dream?", Emma tells Jeremy "you can't talk to dragons" when he explains that he was daydreaming about doing so to get an idea for their story. One second later, Figment (seemingly) brings them both to Figonia so they can do just that.
  • Delightful Dragon: Figment, more so than in Journey into Imagination, as he's friendly and helpful to the kids that he interacts with and they in turn act the same way to him.
  • Edutainment: The series fits this trope to a T, leaning heavily on the educational side.
  • Everything's Better with Rainbows: Towards the end of the opening sequence, Figment surfs down a rainbow.
  • Formula-Breaking Episode: "Reading Magic with Figment and Peter Pan" and "Writing Magic with Figment and Alice in Wonderland" do not include the series' theme song.
  • Half-Dressed Cartoon Animal: Figment only wears a yellow and red shirt most of the time. Strangely, in "How Does Sound Sound?", he goes behind a screen to change from his night shirt into his regular shirt after a thunderstorm wakes him up.
  • "I Am" Song: 9 out of the 11 shorts start with Figment singing this type of song, appropriately titled "I'm Figment".
  • In-Series Nickname: The kids sometimes call Figment "Figgy".
  • Lack of Imagination: Discussed and defied. In "Do Dragons Dream?", Emma initially thinks she does not have an imagination. Figment tells her that everyone has one and by the end, she realizes that he is correct.
  • Magical Incantation: In "What's An Abra Without A Cadabra?", siblings Justin and Kim accidentally transport themselves to Figonia by reciting an incantation printed in a magic kit. Figment then has to help them figure out the incantation that needs to be recited to transport them back home.
  • Master of Illusion: Figment says that he is the trope name word for word in the theme song "I'm Figment".
  • Never Learned to Read: Peter Pan in "Reading Magic With Figment and Peter Pan". Figment and Amy then teach him how important it is to know how to read.
  • One-Steve Limit: Averted twice:
    • "How Does Sound Sound?" has one of the kids being named Peter and then the titular character of Peter Pan appears in the following short "Reading Magic With Figment and Peter Pan".
    • There is a Jessica in "How Does Sound Sound?" and a Jessie in "Where Does Time Fly?".
  • Pirate Episode: In "Where Does Time Fly?", Nick and Jessie help Figment write a story about pirates.
  • Playground Song: In "How Does Sound Sound?", live action footage of kids reciting the "kissed a snake" variation of "Cinderella Dressed in Yellow" is briefly shown.
  • Portal Book: Referenced in the theme song with the line "I open books and jump into them".
  • Questioning Title?: 8 out of the 11 shorts have titles that are formatted this way.
  • Refugee from TV Land: Alice winding up in Figonia and disappearing from her book as a result kicks off the plot of "Writing Magic With Figment and Alice In Wonderland".
  • Roger Rabbit Effect: A traditionally animated Figment interacts with live action children. Downplayed since they don't usually all appear onscreen at the same time.
  • Shapeshifting: Figment briefly turns into a fish in "Do Dragons Dream?"
  • Show Within a Show: A story about a king that learns important lessons about colors is read in "Would You Eat A Blue Potato?".
  • The Smurfette Principle: There is only one female main character in each short.
  • Special Thanks:
    • Every short's end credits thank specific educational institutions and educators.
    • At the end of the credits for "How Does It Feel To Be An Elephant?", special thanks is given to the San Diego Wild Animal Park.note 
    • At the end of the credits for "How Does It Feel To Fly?", special thanks is given to Trans World Airlines.
  • Stock Footage: Used in every short as mentioned above in the description. One notable example is footage of the titular character of The Reluctant Dragon being used to portray Figment's Uncle Max in "What Can You See By Looking?".
  • Title Drop:
    • At the end of "Do Dragons Dream?", Emma and Jeremy decide to use the short's title as the title for their story when they start writing it.
    • Figment does this at the end of "The Case of the Missing Space".
  • Write What You Know: In-universe at the end of "Do Dragons Dream?", Emma and Jeremy write a story based on their encounter with Figment for their homework assignment.