Sunday, April 27, 2014

Design Thinking

On Friday my students and I were lucky enough to have 2 students from the Stanford Design School visit. We ran through a Nearpod Design Thinking presentation they had created.

I was a little unsure ahead of time about how the concepts would go over with my students. I wasn't sure how easily they would be able to relate to the college students in the videos and the real world problems of third world countries that are so far removed from Silicon Valley life.

However, the lesson was quite successful. The Nearpod presentation has been put together in easy to understand chunks. There was a good mix of text, videos, and response slides. Even though they're 1st and 2nd graders my students were able to relate to concepts dealt with in design thinking. For example, we could relate empathy to life on the playground and Project Cornerstone. Observation is something we talk about frequently during science experiments. Sharing stories is something they love to do all the time! Perseverance happens during math centers when I won't tell them the solution to a tangram puzzle. Creativity is a skill during writing and art.

It was also a perfect time to talk about design thinking because closer to the end of the month we will have several periods of "passion" time when students will think about something they enjoy, relate that to a problem and work on creative solutions.

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