On completion of the workshop, you will have experienced Design Thinking methodology themselves, and will be ready to share it with others. From identifying interesting problems to look at to collecting interesting resources for prototyping, the session gives you useful, practical techniques, as well as showing how children will be learning important skills during the process.
Whether you are looking to build a unit of work, or plan something to do at home over the weekend, Design Thinking gives you an approach to creating deeply engaging activities.
Driven by children’s curiosity and interests, plan activities where they can explore, create and learn.
These are skills that they can apply in a wide range of contexts, both at school and outside. As they apply them more broadly, the skills will continue to develop with use.
With screens and digital technology playing such a big role in learning and recreation for children, Design Thinking is about the physical, the experiential and the low tech. Even when thinking about technological problems, it focuses on conversation, physical prototyping, and hands-on experience.
The more opportunities children have to learn and play in these ways, the more balance we can create with mediated technology.
The course was developed to contribute toward 3.3.2, 3.4.2 and 6.3.2 from the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers towards maintaining Proficient Teacher Accreditation in NSW.
Design thinking is a great way to work with kids because it develops a range of important skills. It encourages creative thinking in a wide range of domains. It also encourages critical thinking and shows how critical and creative thinking can work together to generate great ideas.
The approach is also very hands-on. It has a focus on exploring a problem through doing - from asking people to experiencing things for yourself. It also focuses on doing as part of developing solutions - creating prototypes to test ideas, getting people to use initial prototypes, and learning through trial and error.
Design Thinking encourages collaborative exploration. It's a great way to help kids develop the social skills to participate in and lead group activities.
The first part of the workshop is an introduction to Design Thinking. Whether you are familiar with the idea, or this is all new to you, we take a few minutes to get everyone on the same page.
The second part of the workshop is to doing some hands-on design thinking. We believe you really need to have experienced it to teach it, so you will work on a real problem with some of the other workshop participants. You will identify problems, come up with solutions, prototype them, test them - all in the space of about an hour!
The third part of the workshop is stepping you through the process of preparing and running a design thinking session for kids. We will switch back and forth between the hands-on activity and the 'how to do this with kids', showing you how each part of the activity you are doing can best be run with children from 5 years and up.
You'll take away some simple documentation, tools and suggestions that mean you will be all set to run your own session.
Design Thinking is about thinking with your hands, not just your head. Building lo-fi prototypes, testing and learning - these are critical skills for success in problem solving.
If you spend time with young people and want to help them develop creative and critical thinking skills in a fun and engaging way, then this is the workshop for you. It gives you practical tools to use in introducing kids to design thinking, as well as giving you a chance to experience the methodology yourself.
There are lots of other great resources around to help you plan and deliver design thinking experiences for kids - in particular you should check out Stanford University's Institute of Design (dschool.stanford.edu) and IDEO's Design Thinking for Educators (www.designthinkingforeducators.com).