As we have uncovered more about play we thought it was time for the children to have an opportunity to demonstrate their learning in a hands-on way. Enter ‘Design Thinking’ and ‘Maker Time’. You get your ideas from daydreaming. You get ideas from being bored. You get ideas all the time. The only difference between innovators and other people is we notice when we’re doing it!
If you missed a previous article or need helping getting to another part of the Design Thinking series, please use the following table of contents:
Design Thinking is a process that we tackle in our classroom, and something that students will be able to take with them throughout their lives.
Design Thinking – Stage 1
In the meantime we will share how it has been implemented in our classroom during this inquiry. There are 5 Stages in the Design Thinking process and we plan to work our way through each step during the last 2 weeks of our unit.
To start with we needed a problem to solve – ‘Kids need more to play with at Magic Years – can you create something for them to play with?‘
After identifying this problem we were able to begin the process, starting with ‘Empathize’. In this stage the children had to think about all the other students in the school and what they like to play with. They were split into groups of four and worked together to draw their responses.
At first, the children found it hard to think beyond their own interests, however, with encouragement began to generate ideas that reflected all children at MYIS. After this group work, we came together as a class and shared our different ideas, here is what we came up with:
- Dolls, in the sand, dress ups
- Play-Doh, swimming, blocks, maze, shark toys
- Trains and Snakes and Ladders
- Princess, bunny house, castles, microphones, wands, bingo
- Barbies, castles, clothes and football
We then discussed the different things in our list and could see that our ideas were either a toy or game. The children now had a better understanding of what students like playing with at MYIS and learnt from their peers ideas. This ‘Empathise’ stage helped the children identify and think about other students’ interests, building a platform for the brainstorming and creation stages to come. In our next post, we will share what the children explored in the ‘Define’ stage.
What do you think about our ideas in stage 1? Did we miss anything?