Modern learning is more about discovery. It’s not so much waiting as doing, says Will Richardson. Learners should be empowered to continue learning and to use their interests to fuel projects that they care about. Richardson had some ideas about how teachers can begin to move away from content delivery and towards a model that is supportive of individual learners.
For educators ready to try the idea of design thinking, you'll be glad to know it does not require extensive transformation of your classroom. That said, it can be a transformative experience for all involved. Here, we try to answer your questions about the different integrating components of a design learning experience into familiar, pre-existing scenarios that play out in every school.
By Barbara Ray At the beginning, people thought she was nuts. Sue Mellon, gifted support coordinator for Springdale Junior and Senior High/Colfax School in the Allegheny Valley School District, thought 7th and 8thgraders could develop a deeper understanding of poetry by playing around with robotics. “Originally, people looked at me like I was crazy,” Mellon said. Now, two … Continue reading Combining Robotics With Poetry? Art and Engineering Can Co-Exist →
By Ashley Williams, Youth Radio What if your extracurricular activities weren’t just extra but a part of your academics too? New thinking on education intends to bring students’ interests into the classroom. It’s called Connected Learning and promotes the idea that students will excel in school if what they are learning is relevant to their … Continue reading Connected Learning: Tying Student Passions to School Subjects →
Scientist Profile: Inventor By Almetria Vaba Spark your students’ curiosity in engineering and technology by introducing them to the designers, inventors, and clever thinkers featured in PBS LearningMedia. Use their stories to illustrate various themes of study like the engineering design process and the impact of technology. DESIGNING A WHEELCHAIR FOR RUGBY See what happens … Continue reading How to Inspire Students to Design, Invent, and Make an Impact →
Getty Images Design thinking can seem a bit abstract to teachers. It’s not part of traditional teacher training programs and has only recently entered the teachers’ vernacular. Design thinking is an approach to learning that includes considering real-world problems, research, analysis, conceiving original ideas, lots of experimentation, and sometimes building things by hand. But few … Continue reading What Does ‘Design Thinking’ Look Like in School? →
Educator Jaime McGrath and designer Drew Davies explain how to create a “classroom of imagination” by turning lessons into design problems and giving students space to be creative in this Tedx video. In a New York Times op-ed The MacArthur Foundation’s Digital Media and Learning Competition’s co-director Cathy Davidson said she thinks it’s possible that … Continue reading Video: “The Future Will Not be Multiple Choice” →
Erin Scott By Matt Levinson Schools are the perfect breeding ground for fostering students’ questions, a place to spark students’ interests and ideas for designing innovative solutions to real problems. Everyday, educators have opportunities to help kids develop the tools, skills and habits to come up with meaningful, lasting solutions to problems. Take, for example, … Continue reading Got a Problem? Students Can Find the Solution →
Courtesy: Exploratorium In step with the popularity and growing momentum of Maker Faire, the “maker movement” is going global with the help of the Exploratorium museum’s Global Studios. After 40 plus years of work in this field, the Exploratorium, which is based in San Francisco, is stepping up its involvement in hands-on, informal science and … Continue reading The Maker Movement Goes Global →
A group of Harvard researchers is teaming up with schools in Oakland, Calif. to explore how kids learn through making. Through an initiative called Project Zero, they’re investigating the theory that kids learn best when they’re actively engaged in designing and creating projects to explore concepts. It’s closely aligned with the idea of design thinking … Continue reading Harvard Wants to Know: How Does the Act of Making Shape Kids’ Brains? →
By Melanie Kahl Designers are privileged to work within a fascinating collision of fields at a time when the conversation could not be more pertinent. The intersection of design and education is ripe for exploration –– its metaphors, roles, spaces, and philosophies. These worlds have a lot to learn from one another. The design field … Continue reading Recasting Teachers and Students as Designers →
Flickr: Corey Leopold By Greg Stack So much about how and where kids learn has changed over the years, but the physical structure of schools has not. Looking around most school facilities — even those that aren’t old and crumbling — it’s obvious that so much of it is obsolete today, and yet still in … Continue reading 10 Things in School That Should Be Obsolete →
What do a designer and teacher have in common? Turns out there are a lot of similarities. “Teachers design everyday. They structure all kinds of solutions,” says Sandy Speicher from seminal design firm Ideo. “At any given moment, they’re designing a response to a student and how they bring out content in different ways so … Continue reading Iterating and Ideating: Teachers Think Like Designers →