Engagement and Impact: Design Thinking and the Arts

Engagement and Impact: Design Thinking and the Arts

That computer mouse that fits so nicely in your hand, the way your iPhone reacts to your creative way of spelling, the « so simple why didn’t I think of that? » processes you encounter every day — these are the result of design thinking, a sequential process embraced by innovative companies and entrepreneurs. Design thinking, or human-centered design, is an empowering way to solve problems and design products and solutions by starting with discovery, moving on to ideation and rapid prototyping, then testing, and finally execution.

How can this high-level, innovative style of problem solving work in a classroom or after-school program? Quite well, actually. The West Michigan Center for Arts + Technology (WMCAT) engages urban high school students in a best-practice after-school program that is grounded in design thinking. I’ll share our journey so that you can find ways to enhance your own learning environment through design thinking.

6 Steps to a Student-Created Mobile App
WMCAT teen students are working in teams to explore and tackle a pressing community issue using arts and technology as a basis for inquiry, critical thinking and practical application. Each team has 12 students, is guided by a professional teaching artist, and meets two days a week for the entire school year. Here’s the story of how one of these teams is using the design thinking process.

Our Interactive design team went all out with new technology to address how teens can better engage with their city’s downtown core. They partnered with Downtown Grand Rapids Inc. (DGRI) and local software development firm Mutually Human to create a mobile app.

Step 1: Discover
Our teens toured downtown Grand Rapids with staff from DGRI, visited the offices of Mutually Human, interviewed teens about their perceptions of downtown, and researched other apps on the market.

Step 2: Ideate
Through intense brainstorming, the teens began to coalesce around two themes: zombies and spies!

Step 3: Experiment
The teens began prototyping by creating storyboards for their app. The basic premise was that users would follow a sequential adventure through which visiting key locations downtown would advance the action. Their storyboard was presented to DGRI.

Step 4: Create
All details of the app were developed, including color schemes, transitions, flow of screens, graphics and writing.

Step 5: Refine
The final storyboard and prototype will be presented to DGRI and at a public art exhibit to gain feedback. Feedback is used to refine the project and fine-tune details.

Step 6: Share
This summer, Mutually Human staff will help complete the back-end work on the app so that it can be available on mobile device platforms.

Why design thinking? WMCAT wanted to increase retention and high school graduation rates for our students. We learned through research and evaluation that we could have a greater impact by increasing engagement with a smaller group of students, rather than increasing the number of students coming through our doors. We also wanted to empower students to raise their voices and effect social change. After all, WMCAT is their space to find their voice and change the world in which they live.

Human-Centered Design
Design thinking and project-based learning surfaced as an essential model in innovative school redesign that improves students’ attitudes toward learning. One of the stars in project-based learning was High Tech High (HTH) in San Diego. The WMCAT Teen Arts team traveled to HTH to complete a residency with their staff on the merits, metrics and ins-and-outs of project-based learning. Back in Grand Rapids, we also selected a team to complete a course in Human-Centered Design for Social Innovation from IDEO and Acumen. And then, last summer I was lucky enough to study at the famed d.school at Stanford, where I began to learn just how we could transform our program for teens.

After piloting design thinking as our pedagogy this past school year, we have learned a few things:

The best projects are student-driven and student-led. The more we engaged our teens in choosing their issues, selecting their partners and driving the conversation, the stronger the projects were.
Give students plenty of opportunities to complete mini design challenges along the way. This helped us teach art and tech skills, kept ideas fresh and retained student interest.
Keep giving staff the opportunity to learn and practice design thinking. This spring, our entire team is completing a Mixtape course designed by the d.school at Stanford and refreshing our skills through the IDEO and Acumen course again.
There are great resources out there. To learn more about our design teams and our plans for fall 2014 visit our website. And in the comments section below, please share how you use design thinking in the classroom or in after-school programs.

Engagement together with Impact: Style Thinking as well as Arts

That mouse button that fits for that reason nicely in your hand, just how your iphone 4 reacts to the creative technique of spelling, the main « so straightforward why don’t I think of these?  » procedures you face every day — these are the effect of design thinking, a sequential process embraced by impressive companies and also entrepreneurs. Design and style thinking, or perhaps human-centered style, is an empowering way to answer problems and also design units by beginning with discovery, moving forward to to ideation and high-speed prototyping, then simply testing, settle-back to watch execution.

How does this high-level, innovative form of problem solving job in a school room or after-school program? Quite well, actually. The West The state of michigan Center for Arts and up. Technology (WMCAT) engages urban high school students inside of a best-practice after-school program that may be grounded within design thinking. I’ll talk about our quest so that you can obtain ways to enhance your own finding out environment through design believing.

6 Actions to a Student-Created Mobile App
WMCAT teen individuals are working in teams to learn and undertake the repair of a pushing community concern using martial arts and technological innovation as a base for query, critical imagining and practical application. Each company has 10 students, is actually guided by a professional teaching musician and performer, and meets two days weekly for the entire institution year. The following is the story of how one of these coaches and teams is using the look thinking progression.

Our Digital design company went radically with new technology to address precisely how teens could better engage with their city’s downtown main. They combined with Town center Grand Rapids Inc. (DGRI) and local software package development strong Mutually Individuals to create a phone app.

Action 1: Discover
Our teens toured the town center Grand Rapids with personnel from DGRI, visited the main offices with Mutually Real human, interviewed young people about their awareness of down-town, and checked out other products on the market.

Step 2: Ideate
Through impressive brainstorming, the particular teens did start to coalesce about two designs: zombies along with spies!

Step three: Experiment
The teenage years began prototyping by designing storyboards for their app. The usual premise ended up being that people would keep to sequential voyage through which checking out key destinations downtown might advance the actual action. Their very own storyboard http://domyhomework.pro was initially presented to help DGRI.

Step four: Create
All details of the application were established, including color schemes, transitions, flow of projection screens, graphics along with writing.

Step 5: Refine
The final storyboard and standard will be brought to you to DGRI and at a public skill exhibit in order to gain feedback. Comments is used in order to refine the project and even fine-tune specifics.

Step 6: Write about
Come july 1st, Mutually Human being staff helps complete often the back-end work with the iphone app so that it will be available on cell device websites.

Why design thinking? WMCAT wanted to improve retention together with high school school rates for the students. We learned as a result of research along with evaluation that we could have any impact by just increasing bridal with a more compact group of college students, rather than growing the number of college students coming with our gates. We likewise wanted to empower students to lift their voices and consequence social modify. After all, WMCAT is their particular space to uncover their thoughts and replace the world during which they live life.

Human-Centered Pattern
Design and style thinking in addition to project-based figuring out surfaced for being an essential style in inventive school redesign that improves students’ perceptions toward understanding. One of the personalities in project-based learning was initially High Tech Large (HTH) on San Diego. Typically the WMCAT Youngster Arts group traveled to HTH to complete a good residency utilizing their staff within the merits, metrics and ins-and-outs of project-based learning. Instruction online Grand Rapids, we as well selected some sort of team to achieve a course with Human-Centered Design for Social Originality from IDEO and Longsightedness. And then, last summer I used to be lucky enough to learn at the credited d. school at Stanford, where I began to master just how we could actually transform our program with regard to teens.

Soon after piloting design thinking seeing that our pedagogy this past education year, we have learned a handful of things:

The top projects usually are student-driven plus student-led. The larger we interested our teens in deciding upon their difficulties, selecting all their partners and also driving the actual conversation, the very stronger the particular projects were definitely.
Present students plenty of opportunities to carry out mini style challenges throughout the game. This made it easier for us teach art and tech ability, kept creative ideas fresh together with retained college interest.
Keep presenting staff opportunities to learn and also practice layout thinking. This spring, each of our entire team is finishing a Mixtape course designed by the n. school on Stanford in addition to refreshing each of our skills via the IDEO and Acumen path again.
There are fantastic resources around. To learn more about some of our design groups and all of our plans for fall 2014 visit internet site. And in the comments section below, please talk about how you work with design thinking in the classroom or maybe in after-school programs.