In today’s world, we need students to be critical thinkers, problem solvers, creators and collaborators. Where does Design Thinking come into play with this notion? Design Thinking is a mindset. It is a great way to help people tackle problems in manageable pieces—it can also help them learn empathy and think about the global implications of local problems.This is something that we strive for our students to learn, but how?
This summer, a colleague and I were intrigued with the idea of bringing the idea of Design Thinking into classrooms. We found some great resources about what Design Thinking is and how it is used with businesses but we wanted to know more about classroom use. We came across two AMAZING resources that I’d like to share with you today.
Design Thinking for Educators - What I love about this resource is that it is a site created by IDEO, a design and innovation firm. Along with some teacher examples, the site includes a FREE toolkit to help get the process of Design Thinking started in your classroom. It contains the process and methods of design along with the Designer’s Workbook, adapted specifically for the context of K-12 education. It offers new ways to be intentional and collaborative when designing, and empowers educators to create impactful solutions. And did I mention that it was FREE? Definitely worth checking out!
Launch by John Spencer and A.J. Juliani - This is a book that is a game changer for utilizing Design Thinking in the classroom. It “provides a process that can be incorporated into every class at every grade level ... even if you don't consider yourself a "creative teacher."
We were so excited to dig into this resource that we invited two teachers that we are currently mentoring to jump on board with us. They are part of a group known as the “Innovation Academy” in our district which is a cadre where we help build teacher leadership in innovation and the latest educational trends. We are excited to utilize Voxer as the place where we discuss and share ideas that we gain while reading this incredible book.
We also have taken advantage of the wonderful resources that the authors have provided at thelaunchcycle.com/ (definitely check out the FREE posters!)
Have you found any other resources that help with the idea of using Design Thinking with students? I am especially interested in finding out more about Design Thinking in primary grades. Please leave your ideas in the comments below!