Join Us for the 2017 Global Day of Design #GDD17

Last year over 40,000 students and 450 schools from 5 continents participated in the very first Global Day of Design. The hashtag went viral as students and teachers shared and launched their creative projects all day long around the globe. This year, we are doing it again, and we can’t wait to see what students […]

How I’m Using Design Thinking to Develop a Free Resource for New Teachers

I need your help. In the next few weeks, I plan on creating a free resource for new teachers. I plan to use the LAUNCH Cycle (the design thinking framework that A.J. Juliani and I developed) to move from empathy and awareness into research and ideation, before eventually creating a beta concept. I want to […]

Great Design Can Begin Anywhere (6 Starting Places for Design Thinking)

For the past five days, our yard has been canvased by a thick sheet of snow — well, thick for a southwestern guy who has just moved to the northwest. I’m pretty sure my friends in Michigan would call it a “dusting.” However, my kids have been throwing snowballs and making snow monsters and sledding […]

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Six Videos to Spark Creative Thinking

Limitations and challenges can be frustrating. However, they can also be the creative constraint that leads to problem-solving and divergent thinking. Over the years, I’ve learned that students love challenges that they find engaging, intriguing and meaningful. Some of these are practical and real-world. Others are fantastical and require a bold imagination. I want to […]

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10 Things That Happen When Students Engage in Design Thinking

In a recent post, I wrote about why I want to see students become innovators: Unfortunately, the system isn’t designed for innovation. For years, schools have been stuck in a one-size-fits-all factory model, where students passively consume content. Some people will point out that this model is outdated. However, I would argue that factory education was […]

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Start with the Mindset, Not the Space

Yesterday, I got the chance to lead a discussion on makerspaces. I felt out of place as a facilitator, because I’ve never actually created a maker space. I know my limitations; and that includes redesigning the physical space of the classroom. If you asked me to create a list of items that “every maker space […]

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Why Duct Tape and Cardboard Might Be a Better Option than a 3D Printer

This is the third post in a series on vintage learning.  A few days ago, I met Manuel Herrera at MORENet. He has an amazing maker space where students engage in creative thinking on a daily basis. It’s a bastion of creativity and wonder and his passion for it is contagious. However, as we talked […]

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The Future Belongs to the Makers

When I was in the eight grade, my entire goal was to go unnoticed. Fly under the radar. Keep away from the Cool Patrol (the people who ran the school social hierarchy). I had one friend, this kid named Matt, who I knew from church. We were two nerds in a pod. And, fortunately for me, […]

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Treating Challenges as Design Opportunities

I’m sitting on a plane right now writing this blog post. I just spent an hour working on a sketchy video and before that, I worked on another blog post. I’m nestled up against a window where I can look to my right and remember, in awe, that I am floating on the clouds. I’ve […]

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Share the Product and the Process

About a month ago, someone placed a pair of hipsterish glasses on a museum floor as a prank. Within minutes, a crowd gathered to take pictures of the new “work of art.” You could read this as a throwback to the Dada movement or you could view it as yet another ironic, cynical, postmodern statement […]